Four Blue Jackets draft picks named to USA Hockey Junior Team evaluation camp roster
Four Columbus Blue Jackets prospects were named to USA Hockey's National Junior Team evaluation camp roster. Sonny Milano, Ryan Collins, Zach Werenski and Paul Bittner were named to the American roster.
The four are joined by 35 other players, 22 forwards, 13 defensemen and four goaltenders total, on the USA roster. The team will take the ice for its first practice on Saturday, Aug. 1 at Lake Placid Olympic Center's Herb Brooks Arena. The team is coached by former NHL head coach and 2010 U.S. men's Olympic team coach Ron Wilson.
Werenski and Bittner were the Blue Jackets first and second round picks in the 2015 NHL Draft. Werenski, the No. 8 overall selection, had a sensational freshman season at the University of Michigan last year, while Bittner played for the Portland Winterhawks last season. Collins is in his sophomore year at the University of Minnesota.
Milano is the closest of the four to making it to the NHL and could make the Blue Jackets squad out of training camp. If not, he'll start the season with the Blue Jackets' AHL affiliate, the Lake Erie Monsters.