Sports
Cherry rips Hockey Canada after world junior disaster

Don Cherry

Credits: File/Ian MacAlpine/The Whig-Standard/QMI AGENCY

QMI AGENCY

Hockey Night's Don Cherry says he knows why Canada continues to lose at the world junior championship - and that was before Canada fell to the Russians in Sunday's third-place game in Malmo, Sweden.

At issue is Hockey Canada's tendency to roster an even number of players from each of the Canadian Hockey League's three member leagues -- the OHL, WHL and QMJHL -- instead of selecting Canada's best under-20 players.

"It's politically correct," Cherry said of Team Canada's selection process shortly after it lost to Finland in a world junior semifinal on Saturday

"OHL has nine guys, 41% (of Canada's 2014 world junior roster).

"I'm telling you right now, (they won't) take too many from Ontario. If 22 guys are the best from Quebec, we should take (them).

"That is an absolute joke not to have Darnell Nurse (drafted seventh overall in 2013 by the Edmonton Oilers) out there. Only (Griffin) Reinhart was drafted (higher). Can you believe that? Only Reinhart and (Nurse) doesn't make the team?"

If Grapes was that fired up on Saturday, imagine how he feels now.

For the first time since Hockey Canada started the Program of Excellence in 1982, Canada finished without a medal in back-to-back years after losing to Russia - again - in Sunday's bronze-medal finale.

Canada hasn't won a gold medal since winning on home soil in 2009.

And, according to Cherry, it's because Canadian officials continue to refuse to take the best players year after year.

No less than 11 players on the Canadian team are eligible to participate in the 2015 world junior in Toronto and Montreal.

"Hockey Canada should smarten up and get the best players and work at not being political ," Cherry finished the segment.

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