Photo: U.S. NTDP forward and 2014 NHL Draft prospect Ryan MacInnis has made great strides in his game since the beginning of the 2012-13 season (courtesy of Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
The first thing that most people notice about Ryan MacInnis is his size. Even just having turned 17 years old a couple of weeks ago, MacInnis already stands 6’3” and weighs 174 pounds. His size is imposing, even on a U.S. National Team Development Program team that is peppered with big bodies.
Photo: Green Bay Gamblers defenseman and 2013 prospect Gustav Olofsson recently took part in the USHL Top Prospects Game (courtesy of Peter Arnold/USHL Images)
For most foreign players that join the USHL, like Green Bay Gamblers defenseman Gustav Olofsson, they must learn English and adapt to American culture while learning to play hockey against the best players from around the nation.
Photo: Plymouth Whalers forward and Anaheim Ducks prospect Rickard Rakell didn't tickle the twine at the 2013 WJC, but he did contribute to Sweden's cause with his playmaking ability and physical presence (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)
Coming into the 2013 World Junior Championship as the reigning gold medal champions, Sweden knew right from the beginning that a repeat performance would be no easy task. Not only could a number one goalie not be determined before the tournament began, but not a team in the tournament came in missing what was possibly its four most recognizable and important U-20 pieces, a situation Sweden had to deal with right off the bat.
Photo: Swedish forward Alexander Wennberg is having a good season with Djurgarden of the Allsvenskan league, and turned in a good performance at the 2013 World Juniors, as well (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)
Although Sweden put forth a game effort in their gold medal showdown with the USA at the 2013 World Junior Championship, Team USA proved to be a worthy opponent as they dethroned the Swedes as tournament champions with a 3-1 victory in Ufa, Russia.
Photo: Swedish forward Viktor Arvidsson, shown here celebrating a goal in a game at the U.S. Evaluation Camp, hopes to celebrate a bit more as Sweden faces the USA for gold at the 2013 WJC (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Sweden's roster at the 2013 World Junior Championship features several players that have been drafted by NHL teams. But one 1993-born player that was passed over in the previous two drafts is having a good showing at this WJC, perhaps making himself more of a commodity once the 2012-13 season has ended.