There are many benefits to having a breakout season in the NHL. A shiny new contract is one. Another, for Vincent Trocheck, is an invite to the 2016 World Cup of Hockey. He has been invited to join Team North America as an alternate, according to a report from the Sun Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov.
The 23-year-old Pittsburgh native hit career-high marks last season with 25 goals and 53 points. It was his first full season in the NHL, but he proved that he belongs. The Panthers believed in what he accomplished to the tune of a six-year, $4.75 million AAV deal.
Team North America is comprised of players from Canada and the United States who are 23 or younger as of October 1, 2016. Should a forward from the team not be able to attend the tournament, Trocheck will join Florida teammate Aaron Ekblad on the “young guns,” which actually looks like it could make some noise in the tournament.
It initially seemed like they might not have a chance, but as players like Connor McDavid, Jack Eichel, Jonathan Drouin, Colton Parayko and others began showing that they are forces in the NHL last season, the team’s chances to look a lot better. Then there was concern that it would be goaltending that held them back. But Matt Murray shone throughout the postseason and helped get the Pittsburgh Penguins under the franchise’s fourth Stanley Cup.
Now, it doesn’t look like there is much hold this team back from success at the World Cup.
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.