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Calgary Canucks excited to host AJHL Showcase

The AJHL showcase opens up on Wednesday  with the Olds Grizzly’s facing off against the Grand Prairie Storm at 11:00 a.m.  The AJHL showcase opens up on Wednesday with the Olds Grizzly’s facing off against the Grand Prairie Storm at 11:00 a.m.
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The Calgary Canucks are hosting the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) U18 showcase this week.  All 16 AJHL teams will take part in the showcase with each team playing a pair of games.

Games will be played throughout the day from Wednesday through Saturday at the Max Bells Ken Bracko arena.

Canuck forward Gavin Garland  says it’s a big deal to host this event.

“Extremely excited," he said.

“Should be some good hockey and we’re hoping to get a couple of wins out of this so it should be good.”

SCOUTS OUT IN FULL FORCE

Hopefully the players will play in front of a lot more fans and many scouts will be there to watch them. 

Canuck defenceman Nolan Paquette, 16, said getting noticed by scouts is the name of the game at the AJHL showcase.

Calgary Canuck defenceman Nolan Paquette says the goal of the U18 showcase is to get noticed by scouts

“The goal is to impress people when I’m playing and just play my game," Paquette said.

“You’ve just got to treat it like every other game.  Go out there and play the same way you can.  It’s no different.”

ACTION STARTS WEDNESDAY

The showcase opens up on Wednesday  with the Olds Grizzly’s facing off against the Grand Prairie Storm at 11:00 a.m.  The Canucks play at 5:00 p.m. against the Canmore Eagles. 

Canucks head coach Brad Moran is hoping a lot of fans will show up at Max Bell.

“That’s the hope,” he said.

“We started our U18 showcase last night and attendance was good," Moran said. "It was scouted well and I think we’ll continue to build on that momentum and I think when people see there’s games all day for four straight days of this calibre, we’ll start to get more and more people out.”

DECENT START FOR THE CANUCKS

The Canucks opened up the season with a 2-1 overtime loss to Lloydminster and followed it up with a 5-0 setback against Bonnyville.

But things turned around this past weekend as the Canucks beat Camrose 3-1 on Saturday and doubled up Canmore on Sunday.

Paquette says it’s a decent start.

“The first two games weren’t so good, but this past weekend we really picked things up," he said, "and had two really good games. 

"We have a good squad here," he added, "and it’s looking good.”

EXPECTATIONS HIGH

The expectations in the Canucks' dressing room are high this season. Garland said those weekend wins boosted the team's confidence.

“Like the last two games we had were huge for us and we’re definitely getting the confidence in the room,” he said.

Calgary Canuck Gavin Garland says expectations are high in the teams' dressing room this year

“We could definitely play some better hockey for sure though and we have yet to see the best version of ourselves so it would be good this week if we could see that.”

Here’s a complete schedule of the AJHL Showcase

Wednesday

11:00 a.m. Olds vs Grand Prairie

2:00 p.m.  Brooks vs Whitecourt

5:00 p.m.  Canmore vs Calgary

8:00 p.m.  Bonnyville vs Blackfalds

Thursday

11:00 a.m.  Whitecourt vs Drumheller

2:00 p.m.  Grand Prairie vs Camrose

5:00 p.m.  Drayton Valley vs Bonnyville

8 :00 p.m.  Lloydminster vs Okotoks

Friday

11:00 a.m.  Camrose vs Fort McMurray

2:00 p.m.  Sherwood Park vs Lloydminster

5:00 p.m.  Calgary vs Drayton Valley

8:00 p.m.  Spruce Grove vs Olds

Saturday

11:00 a.m.  Fort McMurray vs Sherwood Park

2:00 p.m.  Drumheller vs Spruce Grove

5:00 p.m.  Okotoks vs Brooks

8:00 p.m.  Blackfalds vs Canmore

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