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O! Canada Panthers: Gudbranson, Howden to World Juniors

Canada Here is the official release from the Panthers regarding Erik Gudbranson and Quinton Howden making Team Canada:

Hockey Canada announced today their final roster for the 2011 IIHF World Jr. Championship that will take place in Buffalo, NY from December 26, 2010 through January 5, 2011. The final roster includes Panthers prospects D Erik Gudbranson (3rd overall) and F Quinton Howden (25th overall), who were both first-round selections for Florida in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

Gudbranson (6-4, 211 lbs), Florida’s first pick in this past year's draft, attended training camp with the Panthers before being returned to his junior club the Kingston Frontenacs (OHL). The 18-year-old defenseman serves as Kingston’s assistant captain and has recorded 11 points (3-8-11) with 55 PIM in 21 games.

Howden, 18, (6-3, 192 lbs), the Panthers third first-round choice in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, also attended training camp with the Panthers before being returned to his junior club, the Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL).  The 18-year old forward ranks fourth among WHL leaders with 22 goals and places tied for first on his junior team with 40 points (22-18-40).

Canada will begin their exhibition schedule this Monday against Sweden in Oshawa, Ontario before taking on Sweden Tuesday in Toronto. Their exhibition schedule will close next Thursday in Kitchener, Ontario against Finland. Team Canada’s first game of the 2011 World Jr. Championship will take place on Dec. 26 against Russia at the HSBC Arena in Buffalo.