Hockey Canada President Wants NHL Draft Age Lifted To 19

We probably could've seen this coming from a mile away. Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson wants the NHL to move its draft age from 18 to 19, and you don't need an advanced degree to understand why.

When 18-year-old players make NHL squads in training camp and stick there, two very obvious things always happen: They can't play for their Junior squads anymore and they can't play in the World Junior Championships. Nicholson, the president of Hockey Canada, has two major interests to appease: the Canadian National Team and the Canadian Hockey League.

Neate Sager has much more on this over at Buzzing The Net, but it's not rocket science as to why Hockey Canada is lobbying for this. How much better would CHL hockey be with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Sean Couturier and Mark Scheifele, among others, on their Junior teams? And my God, how much better would Canada's WJC team be with those guys?

Nicholson will be hoping to get this instituted in the next NHL CBA, and he does make a compelling case that includes the success of the 2003 draft class, one of the best in NHL history that also happened to benefit from an extra year of Junior or AHL hockey during the lockout. Who knows if the NHL will actually go for it, though.

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