International impressions

Kootenay Ice forward Jaedon Descheneau and defenceman Rinat Valiev hope to have left a mark ahead of the World Junior Championship

Kootenay Ice

Kootenay Ice

Taylor Rocca


Though many view the CHL Subway Super Series as a bit of a throwback to the legendary days of lore when the Soviet Union’s Red Army and Team Canada battled for international hockey supremacy, it meant a lot more than just nostalgia for Kootenay Ice forward Jaedon Descheneau and defenceman Rinat Valiev.

“It’s a lot of fun playing with the best players from your league,” Descheneau said prior to Kootenay Ice practice Thursday afternoon. “You really get to see what other players do and learn from them.

“It’s a good experience.”

With the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship on the horizon, the CHL Subway Super Series provides one last gasp for major junior hockey players to get their name into the conversation, if it isn’t already there.

Descheneau, a 19-year-old fifth-round selection (124th overall, 2014) of the St. Louis Blues, was left off the Team Canada development camp roster this past summer. After a 98-point campaign in 2013-14, the 5-foot-9 spitfire has put up eight goals and 16 points through 17 games this season in hopes of landing his name on the radar of Team Canada brass.

“I played more physical and made sure I was better in my [defensive] zone,” Descheneau said. “I think I did the best I could and hopefully I get an invite to camp in December.”

The Edmonton native suited up in both games for Team WHL this past Monday and Tuesday. In a 3-2 shootout loss to the Russians in Saskatoon, the shifty Descheneau was looked to in the shootout by head coach Dave Lowry, ahead of the likes of 2014 first-round picks Conner Bleackley and Jake Virtanen.

“They gave me an opportunity and they upped my ice throughout both games,” Descheneau said. “I started playing more in the second game, played a little power-play time and I was on the ice with a minute left trying to score to tie the game up.”


With 11 eligible returners from Team Canada’s entry at the 2014 World Junior Championship, including Kootenay Ice teammate Sam Reinhart, getting an opportunity to don the Maple Leaf remains a difficult one for Descheneau, but it’s alive nonetheless.

On the other side of the ice, 6-foot-2 defenceman Rinat Valiev hopes he did enough to convince Team Russia general manager Alexei Kochetkov that he is worthy of joining the Russians in search of international glory this December.

“It’s last chance to show my game before the world juniors,” Valiev said Thursday afternoon prior to Kootenay Ice practice. “Coach will decide [if] he will invite me to the camp or not.

“I think I played okay, but I know I can be better.”

Valiev, a 2014 third-round pick (68th overall) of the Toronto Maple Leafs, participated in Team Russia’s summer development camp, so he has a bit more of a leg up on the situation than Descheneau.

That being said, the Russians invited 11 defencemen to the Super Series, including Brandon Wheat Kings stud Ivan Provorov, who is eligible for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. With that many blue-liners in the mix, nothing is a given for the 19-year-old Valiev, who is focused on getting up to speed in hopes his play with the Ice over the coming weeks will help solidify his position.

“I have to work hard, play every game hard, show myself,” Valiev added.

After missing the first 12 games of the year due to a lower-body injury, the native of Nizhnekamsk has impressed since his return to the Kootenay Ice lineup. With two goals and eight points in seven games, Valiev has helped steady both the transition game and power play for the Kootenay Ice.

“It was a little bit tough for me,” Valiev said of the pace at the Super Series. “The speed was really high. I just started playing [after recovering from injury] so it was a little bit tough to get going, but I’m happy to win two games.”


Valiev suited up for Team Russia in both games against Team WHL, registering zero points and a minus-1 rating.

Team Canada’s selection camp roster for the 2015 edition of the annual junior championship is expected to be announced in early December.

Toronto and Montreal play host to the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship.

A Canadian holiday tradition, the tournament fires up Dec. 26, when Team Russia opens the tournament against Denmark while Team Canada faces off against Slovakia.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
47 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health region

1,538 total cases, 399 are active, ten in hospital

Item no 22, De-Kieviet Kindergarten class - Highlands, Starting Bid: $20
Christmas Village 2020 school auction items

The annual Christmas Village has gone virtual, here are the auction items from local schools

1913
It happened in 1913

Nov. 22 - 28: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the newspapers at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

2020
Urban wildlife Part VI: The East Kootenay birds of autumn

The work of local photographers printed in the pages of the East Kootenay Advertiser throughout 2020. Part VI.

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 65 new cases of COVID-19

Province-wide, there are 887 new cases of the virus

The bids for the 2020 Christmas Village are open as of noon on Thursday, November 26. Please scroll through this album to see auction items available for bidding.
Christmas Village 2020 auction items

The Christmas Village has gone virtual, here are all the details

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
B.C. care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A man walks by a COVID-19 test pod at the Vancouver airport in this undated handout photo. A study has launched to investigate the safest and most efficient way to rapidly test for COVID-19 in people taking off from the Vancouver airport. The airport authority says the study that got underway Friday at WestJet’s domestic check-in area is the first of its kind in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Vancouver Airport Authority *MANDATORY CREDIT*
COVID-19 rapid test study launches at Vancouver airport for departing passengers

Airport authority says that a positive rapid test result does not constitute a medical diagnosis for COVID-19

Most Read