Team USA rules out NHL draft-eligible prospects

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) General manager Jim Johannson has ruled out the possibility of the U.S. men's hockey team having NHL draft-eligible prospects competing at the Winter Olympics in February.

Johannson tells The Associated Press he doesn't view anyone from the 18-and-younger pool of prospects capable of cracking the projected lineup of non-NHL players, many of whom are opening this season playing in Europe.

USA Hockey's assistant executive director says he's also targeting a number of established college players, and would not rule out keeping a spot or two open for members of the U.S. team competing at the World Junior Championships this winter.

Johansson spoke in Buffalo, New York, on Thursday, where he is attending USA Hockey's sixth annual All-American Prospects game. The game features the top 42 U.S.-born players eligible to be selected in the NHL draft in June.


For more AP NHL coverage:

Team USA rules out NHL draft-eligible prospects
  Got something to say? Leave a comment below!
Las Vegas native Zucker scores in 1st game in his hometown
Pokes it free and gets the goal. #MINvsVGK
Hoffman one-times game winner past Bishop
Hoffman gets it done in overtime...again. @EASPORTSNHL
MacKinnon hammers one-timer to push point streak to 11 games
Rocket riding... @Mackinnon9's bringing a whole new meaning to that term. 🚀 #NSHvsCOL
Kane beats Smith with floater from just inside the blue line
No need for a dump and chase here. #SJSvsCGY
Other members of the 600-goal club, teammates congratulate Ovechkin
Check out the entire ceremony from tonight at @CapitalOneArena for @Ovi8 to honor his 600th goal in the @NHL! #600VI #ALLCAPS
Referee accidentally elbows Coyotes' Ekman-Larsson after calling penalty 😳
What the .... zebra? Hockey=Rough game. #Yotes
Malkin blasts home his 40th goal of the season 💣
Holy guacamole, Geno 🔥🔥🔥