The Carolina Hurricanes today confirmed that forward Martin Necas will be joining the Czech Republic team for the upcoming World Junior Championships.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for Marty to show himself on the world stage,” said Checkers head coach Mike Vellucci. “He’s excited about it and we’re excited to watch him over there.”
This marks the third time that the 19-year-old will represent his native Czech Republic at World Juniors. Last year Necas led the tournament in assists and tied for the scoring lead.
“It’s always so nice to play for my country,” said Necas. “I’m excited to see my friends again and have some fun.”
At the time of his departure Necas ranks third on the Checkers and is tied for third among all league rookies with 22 points (7g, 15a) in 26 games. He’ll now look to keep that momentum going into the prestigious tournament.
“I feel more comfortable now than I did at the beginning of the season,” said Necas. “In Carolina I didn’t play much and I couldn’t play with the puck. Then I came here and I play a lot and I’m getting more confidence and I feel great. I hope that it’s going to be a good tournament for us.”
This is the second consecutive year that the Checkers have been represented at the tournament, as Janne Kuokkanen suited up for Finland in the 2018 games.
The 2019 World Junior Championships are being held in Vancouver and will run from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5. The Checkers will play seven times between Necas’ departure today and the end of the tournament.