Хроника Хоккея


Canada's surprise star
31.12.2002. ZURKOWSKY, HERB. The Gazette

Parenteau tied for team lead in goals. Chicoutimi junior was overlooked by team at evaluation camp before world tourney

He wasn't even part of Team Canada's thought process last summer. But Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau is tied for the team lead in goals at the World Junior Hockey Championship.

The Chicoutimi junior, selected 264th over-all by Anaheim in the 2001 draft, wasn't among the 44 players invited to Canada's evaluation camp in August. From that point on, the Boucherville native vowed to do everything in his power to get noticed.

"For sure, I was a little frustrated, although right now that's not very important," he said yesterday. "But I was very motivated at the beginning of the season and told myself that I wanted to be part of Team Canada.

"It's a dream of every player in the CHL. It's amazing. Since I was 10, I've looked at the game during the Christmas period with my parents and family. And now that I have the chance to play here, it's a great feeling, one I'll never forget."

Parenteau wasn't on the list of players newly appointed Canadian Hockey Association head scout Blair Mackasey inherited from his predecessor, Barry Trapp. But when the 5-foot-11, 178-pound winger got off to a quick start in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Mackasey and others started to take notice.

Parenteau was the league's leading scorer, with 20 goals and 55 points in 31 games, when he reported to Halifax on Dec. 11 for the team's selection camp.

"He's a natural scorer and he's got great hands," Mackasey said. "He's been a good player in the league for a couple of years."

Parenteau has three goals and one assist through three games in this tournament. He's tied for the team lead in goals with captain Scottie Upshall, and will be counted on tonight, when Canada completes round-robin play against Finland (8:10 p.m., TSN, RDS).

With a little more luck and finishing touch around the net, Parenteau could have several more goals. He's had numerous scoring opportunities, only to be denied by a great save or a post. He's also shot wide more than once.

"He's great around the net," Mackasey said. "I'm surprised he doesn't have more goals."

Parenteau said he discovered at an early age that he had a gift for scoring. It all comes down to positioning and anticipation, he explained. Parenteau understands his role on Canada is to score and contribute offence. It might not be evident, since Canada has scored 16 goals in three games, but he and Upshall are the only forwards who have scored more than once.

This competition has provided Parenteau with an additional opportunity to play on the same line with his second cousin, Pierre- Marc Bouchard, probably for the last time, since Bouchard was loaned to Canada from the NHL's Minnesota Wild.

The two played minor hockey together for seven years and live five minutes apart on the South Shore. Mackasey said team officials figured the two would be a natural fit playing on the same line and would provide some chemistry for Canada. Bouchard has two assists in the tournament.

"I don't look at him like my cousin. He's my best friend. We're always together in the summer," Parenteau said. "Not only can I talk to him in French on the bench, but we're very confident when we play together and I can anticipate his moves."

Parenteau, the first Canadian to beat Germany's Dimitri Patzold - more than 12 minutes into the second period and not until the team's 25th shot - on Sunday, might have to be as patient tonight.

Finland's Kari Lehtonen became the highest-drafted European goalie in NHL history last June, when Atlanta selected him second over-all. Lehtonen was the tournament's all-star netminder last year and has been as stingy here. Through his country's first three games, he allowed only four goals and a shutout, with a save percentage of .961. Finland tied the Czech Republic 2-2 last night.

Tonight's winner finishes first in the division, advances directly into Friday's semi-final and is guaranteed of spot in a medal-round game. The loser must play in a quarter-final on Thursday.

"We want to win, for sure," said Canadian coach Marc Habscheid. "But we're not eliminated if we don't."

Note: Marc-Andre Fleury is expected to start in goal tonight - if he's healthy. But he has an upset stomach and didn't practice yesterday. Fleury was the backup against Germany as David LeNeveu played for the first time. 

Первая страничка молодежных чемпионатов мира 2003 года
Подгруппа А - подробнее
Россия, Швейцари, США, Словакия, Белоруссия
Подгруппа В - подробнее
Канада, Финляндия, Чехия, Швеция, Германия
За 7-10 места - подробнее
Швейцария, Швеция, Германия, Белоруссия
1/4 финала - подробнее
США - Чехия
Финляндия - Словакия
1/2 финала - подробнее
Россия - Финляндия
Канада - США
Финал - подробнее
За 5 место. Словакия - Чехия
За 3 место. США - Финляндия
За 1 место. Канада - Россия
Страничка статистики

Молодежные чемпионаты мира (до 20 лет) 2003 года.