Canada is adding a big piece to its roster for the upcoming world junior hockey championship.
Boston Bruins forward Matthew Poitras is joining Canada’s team as it looks to defend its gold medal in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Canada had decided against selecting a 13th forward when the roster was announced last week in hopes an NHL team would release a player for the tournament, which runs Dec. 26-Jan. 5.
Poitras has five goals and eight assists through 27 games with the Bruins this season. The five-foot-11, 180-pound forward ranks tied for 10th in rookie scoring.
The 19-year-old from Ajax, Ont., had 16 goals and 79 assists in 63 games for the Ontario Hockey League’s Guelph Storm last season. The Bruins selected him 54th overall in the 2022 draft.
Poitras will report to Canada on Tuesday in Sweden ahead of the first pre-tournament game against Denmark’s under-25 team.
The Canadians then meet Switzerland on Dec. 22 and the United States the following day before opening their world juniors Dec. 26 against Finland at Gothenburg’s Scandinavium arena.
Poitras joins forwards Owen Beck and Fraser Minten, and defenceman Tristan Luneau as the only Canadian skaters with NHL experience heading into the under-20 showcase.
Beck, the lone returnee from last January’s gold-medal winning squad in Halifax, played one game for the Montreal Canadiens in 2022-23.
Minten dressed for four games with the Toronto Maple Leafs in the fall, while Luneau has skated seven times for the Anaheim Ducks.
The roster also features presumptive 2024 first-overall pick Macklin Celebrini, a 17-year-old forward with 10 goals and 15 assists in 15 games for Boston University this season.
Owen Allard, Easton Cowan, Nate Danielson, Jordan Dumais, Conor Geekie, Carson Rehkopf, Matthew Savoie, Matthew Wood and Brayden Yager round out the forward group.
Canada is looking to three-peat at the tournament for the first time since 2009.
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