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Raty among group vying to be selected No. 1 in 2021 NHL Draft – NHL.com

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Raty (6-foot-1, 177 pounds), a left-handed center, starred as a 17-year-old at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship and is expected to be a fixture for Finland during the 2021 WJC, which is scheduled to be played at Rogers Place in Edmonton Dec. 26-Jan. 5.

“At present, he’s the No. 1 prospect in Europe,” said Goran Stubb, the NHL director of European Scouting. “Aatu is a strong skater with speed, balance and excellent puck control. Something positive usually happens on every shift, and he’s got a great attitude, works hard both ways and is used on the power play and penalty kill.”

Raty scored three points (two goals, one assist), had nine shots on goal and a plus-5 rating averaging 11:38 of ice time in seven games as the only 2021 NHL Draft-eligible player at the 2020 WJC. He scored 21 points (two goals, 19 assists) in 30 games for Karpat Under-20 in Finland’s second division and four points (two goals, two assists) in 12 games for Karpat of Liiga, Finland’s top pro league.

He is the younger brother of right wing Aku Raty, selected in the fifth round (No. 151) by the Arizona Coyotes in the 2019 NHL Draft. The Raty brothers played on a line together at the 2020 WJC and for Karpat.

Other players projected as potential first-round candidates are Ontario Hockey League defensemen Brandt Clarke of Barrie and Daniil Chayka of Guelph, center Kent Johnson of Trail in the British Columbia Hockey League, right wing Dylan Guenther of Edmonton in the Western Hockey League, and defensemen Owen Power of Chicago in the United States Hockey League and Luke Hughes of the USA Hockey National Team Development Program Under-18 team.

Hughes (5-11, 162), the youngest of the three Hughes siblings — defenseman Quinn Hughes of the Vancouver Canucks and center Jack Hughes of the New Jersey Devils — scored 28 points (seven goals, 21 assists) and three power-play goals in 48 games for the NTDP Under-17 team this season.

“If anyone could end up benefiting from the quarantine during the coronavirus pandemic, it’s Luke,” former NTDP U-17 coach John Wroblewski said. “His body composition has taken off without the rigors of travel and games. He’s going to be an extremely valuable two-way player.

“The great thing about Luke is that he won’t need to force offense. If he concentrates on shutting people down, the offensive opportunities will be there, and he has a very slick skill set to back it up.”

Luke Hughes, middle, with his brothers, Jack (far left), of the New Jersey Devils, and Quinn (right), of the Vancouver Canucks, at the 2019 NHL Draft in Vancouver.

Power (6-4, 213) scored 40 points (12 goals, 28 assists) and 19 power-play points (five goals, 14 assists) in 47 games for Chicago.

“Power is a big defender who moves well for his size and looks to be a top-pairing defenseman moving forward,” Greg Rajanen of NHL Central Scouting said. “He’s poised with the puck with solid puck decisions.”

Clarke (6-1, 180), a right-handed shot, scored 38 points (six goals, 32 assists) and had nine power-play assists in 57 games as a rookie for Barrie this season.

“Brandt is an extremely mobile puck-moving defenseman with high-end hockey IQ,” Joey Tenute of NHL Central Scouting said. “He’s an excellent passer and playmaker with great vision and execution. He’s excellent on the power play and a quarterback from the back end that sees the ice so well moving the puck up ice to the right option.”

Chayka (6-2, 179) scored 34 points (11 goals, 23 assists) in 56 games in his second season with Guelph.

“Daniil is a very smooth-skating defenseman with excellent mobility,” Tenute said. “He’s extremely calm and poised with the puck and pushes the pace of play up ice. His size gives him excellent range to defend, and his long reach and stick on puck makes him hard to beat.”

Guenther (6-0, 166) scored 59 points (26 goals, 33 assists) and eight power-play goals in 58 games as a rookie this season. He set an Edmonton record for goals by a rookie, surpassing Trey Fix-Wolansky (24) in 2016-17, and points by a rookie, passing defenseman Martin Gernat (55) in 2011-12.

“Dylan is highly skilled and an elite offensive talent,” John Williams of NHL Central Scouting said. “He’s a very good skater, quick and fast. He was a top-line player for the Oil Kings as a 16-year-old.”

Johnson (5-10, 159) led the BCHL in goals (41), assists (60), points (101) and 39 power-play points (14 goals, 25 assists) in 52 games for Trail.

“Right now, he’s slated to be at the University of Michigan [in 2020-21],” Williams said. “He’s another highly skilled player, very elusive and creative with the puck.”

The top goalie prospect could be Jesper Wallstedt (6-2, 214) of Lulea in Sweden. He had a 2.53 goals-against average and .923 save percentage in 28 games for Lulea’s junior team in the SuperElit last season.

“He’s got good size, excellent net coverage, plays with confidence and was the difference-maker in many games this season,” Stubb said. “He reads the game well, has very good quickness and plays an athletic style. Wallstedt is considered the best goalie prospect in Sweden in the past 5-to-6 years.”

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Dodgers can win elusive World Series title if Roberts pulls right strings – Sportsnet.ca

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After suffering a heartbreaking defeat in the most bizarre fashion imaginable in Game 4, the Los Angeles Dodgers rebounded in Game 5 to take a 3-2 lead over the Tampa Bay Rays in the World Series.

Now the Dodgers are just one victory away from slaying their past playoff demons and finally capturing that elusive title.

But the Rays aren’t just going to roll over and hand them the crown. Tampa Bay has its ace on the mound in Blake Snell and manager Kevin Cash hinted at some lineup changes to help spark the offence.

Will the Dodgers close it out or will the Rays force a Game 7? Tune in to Sportsnet or SN Now at 8 p.m. ET to find out. In the meantime, here’s what to watch for prior to first pitch.

Watch every game of the 2020 World Series between the Tampa Bay Rays and Los Angeles Dodgers on Sportsnet and SN Now.

Roberts gets another chance to pull the right strings

The last time Tony Gonsolin started in this series, he lasted just 1.1 innings in what ended up as a bullpen day for the Dodgers in Game 2.

Manager Dave Roberts claims things will be different in Game 6, declaring Gonsolin a “starter” as opposed to an “opener.” Roberts did couch it a little, though.

“I’m going to watch him pitch and then we’ll see what we do after that,” Roberts told reporters Monday. “… I want to go as long as he possibly can, that’d be great.”

Considering Roberts pulled Clayton Kershaw after 85 pitches in Game 5 when he appeared to be cruising, it’s hard to imagine the 25-year-old Gonsolin having a long leash. The bullpen is fully rested after Monday’s off day, giving Roberts his full complement of weapons.

Game 2 didn’t go so well for Roberts as he watched a number of decisions backfire en route to a 6-4 Rays victory. Now the ever-unconventional manager has another chance to flex his strategic muscles and deliver the franchise’s first title since 1988.

Snell must be sharp from the jump

Los Angeles was aggressive from the opening pitch over the weekend, striking for at least one first-inning run in each of the past three games. It will be crucial for Snell to come out of the gate and put a zero on the board to prevent his opponents from building any quick momentum.

Snell was able to limit the Dodgers to two runs over 4.2 innings in Game 2 while striking out nine, but those numbers don’t tell the full story. The left-hander walked four batters and gave up plenty of hard contact. Five of the seven balls put in play against him came off Dodger bats at 95 m.p.h. or harder.

The 2018 Cy Young winner will need to be extra careful this time around, as it’ll be the Dodgers’ second look at him in six days.

MVP Watch

If the Dodgers do indeed take care of business in Game 6, three players stand out for World Series MVP honours, each with a different storyline attached.

The rejuvenated young star: Corey Seager

It wasn’t too long ago that Seager was considered one of the game’s rising superstars. His 2018 season was limited to just 26 games due to Tommy John surgery but his 2020 campaign has put him back in the mix with baseball’s elite.

His regular season was phenomenal — he posted a .943 OPS — and he’s been even better in the playoffs. After winning NLCS MVP, he’s still raking in the World Series with a .471/.609/.842 slash line. If not for the bizarre Rays win in Game 4, Seager would likely have already earned his second MVP trophy of the post-season. The race is Seager’s to lose at this point.

The franchise icon: Justin Turner

Turner has set a number of franchise records during this playoff run and stands as the Dodgers’ post-season leader in games played, hits, walks, RBIs and home runs. He’s been a hit machine during this World Series, as evidenced by his .364/.391/.818 batting line.

An 0-for-4 Game 6 from Seager and another big performance from Turner could easily tip the scales in the third baseman’s favour. He’s a free agent at the end of the year and winning World Series MVP in what could be his final game in a Dodger uniform would be extremely poetic.

The late-bloomer who became a hero: Max Muncy

Muncy was released by the Oakland Athletics at the end of spring training in 2017, prompting the Dodgers to sign him as a minor-league free agent. He’s become a star at the MLB level since his promotion in 2018 and finds himself entrenched in the heart of one of baseball’s best lineups.

Like Seager and Turner, Muncy has been on fire during the World Series, slashing .389/.522/.611. If he provides a clutch hit or two in Game 6 to clinch the title, it would be easy to make the case he deserves MVP.

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Friends and former Oilers remember beloved local sports figure Joey Moss – CBC.ca

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Reaction from across Edmonton and the hockey world is pouring in for beloved local sports figure Joey Moss.

Moss, 57, died on Monday afternoon. He was a locker room attendant for the Edmonton Oilers and Edmonton Football Team for decades and was inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame in 2015.

Moss, who was born with Down syndrome, got his start with the Oilers during the 1984-85 season after Wayne Gretzky noticed him catching a bus in the winter and convinced the team’s general manager, Glen Sather, to find a role for him in the locker room.

Gretzky told CBC Edmonton Tuesday he has heard from many other former Oilers talk about how much the longtime local sports presence did for all of them.

“He’s a special young man,” Gretzky.

“He was a close friend and he made me smile each day and those are things I won’t forget.” 

Edmonton AM8:10Remembering Joey Moss

He proved no matter the obstacle, anything can be achieved. We remember the life of Joey Moss. 8:10

Gretzky quickly developed a bond with Moss, partly because he had an aunt in his family who also had Down syndrome. The two lived together for a year and a half while Gretzky played for the Oilers. But his memories of Moss don’t just revolve around what he did for the Oilers, Gretzky said, adding that Moss was an inspiration for parents of children with disabilities.

“As much as Joey did for all of us, and he did a lot … [he] gave their kids opportunities and I think that’s what people are most thankful about,” Gretzky said.

Moss was also remembered by former members of the Oilers’ training staff who shared their condolences and memories of him on Tuesday.

“I really feel like he made everyone in that room a better person when he left that room,” said former equipment manager Lyle ‘Sparky’ Kulchisky, who said he was thankful to see Moss in hospital on Sunday to say goodbye.

Former head equipment-manager Barrie Stafford added that the team’s players and staff were energized by Moss throughout his more than 30-year career with the team.

“He wasn’t afraid to bark back at any player, it didn’t matter who they were whether it was the coach or Wayne or whoever,” Stafford said.

“He was just a ball of joy and happiness and he passed that on all the time.”

Mayor Don Iveson was emotional when talking about Moss’ death on Tuesday, calling it heartbreaking news for the city.

“As mayor, I got to meet him a number of times and (he’s) just a delightful human being, and it’s sad,” Iveson said.

“He was a great guy, so the loss is deeply felt in our city today.”

A memorial for Joey Moss was placed on Tuesday in front of the mural painted of Moss in 2008. (Min Dhariwal/CBC News)

During his life, Moss was honoured with the NHL Alumni Association’s “Seventh Man Award” for behind-the-scene efforts in the lives of others, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and a mural in Edmonton for his work with both of the city’s major sports teams.

Twitter users shared their own memories of Moss on Tuesday, both as an inspirational and motivating figure, and as a community member in Edmonton.

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Joey Moss bled Edmonton sports and taught a generation about vulnerability – Sportsnet.ca

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EDMONTON — The players and coaches, so many of whom have been tribute tweeting over the past day, saw one side of Joey Moss. The behind closed doors, “Once an Oiler/Edmonton Football Team player, always an Oiler/Edmonton Football Team player,” view.

Us sportswriters, dressing room visitors for a select few hours of the week, we saw another. And the fans here in Edmonton — and across Canada — they saw some part of it all as well, from yet another angle.

But the people who really knew Joseph Neil Moss, who picked him up in the morning, shared a traditional game-day hot tub, or moved him in with their families for weeks at a time during training camps or road trips, were the training staff. People like Lyle “Sparky” Kulchisky, Dwayne Mandrusiak, Ken Lowe and Barrie Stafford — the equipment and medical staff who are the inner workings of the pro sports wristwatch — never rotated in and out the way coaches and players always do.

They saw it every day for a few decades, the impact Moss — who hailed from a local, musically-inclined family — had on 35 years of hockey and football players who passed through this city.

“We saw a side of Joe that was compassionate, but serious at times,” said 49-year Edmonton Football Team equipment man Mandrusiak. “Joe knew when things were not going well and you didn’t joke around. Whether it was vacuuming, doing the laundry or whatever it was, when it was time to go, he took his job seriously.

“But he’d also come up to you when you were having a bad day, put his arm around you and say ‘You’re OK with me.’ You had to smile.’”

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The #Oilers organization is extremely saddened by the passing of our dear friend & colleague, the legendary Joey Moss.Once an Oiler, always an Oiler.RIP, Joey. pic.twitter.com/KJSkN9oO9W

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The entire EE Football Team organization is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Joey Moss.Edmonton lost a hero today. Joey’s bravery, humor, strength, work ethic & perseverance in our dressing room & in our community left indelible impressions that will live with us all. pic.twitter.com/8ATs8ckQMS

At the time he was brought into the Oilers dressing room, Moss was better known to the organization as the 21-year-old younger brother of Wayne Gretzky’s then-girlfriend, singer Vikki Moss. It was an act of inclusion on the part of Gretzky, Glen Sather and the Oilers organization — giving a chance to the 12th of 13 kids born to Lloyd and Sophie Moss in a small home on Edmonton’s east side.

In the end, it was Joey who did all the giving, migrating over to the Edmonton Football Team dressing room and leaving behind a legacy that had Stafford’s phone alight since news of Joey’s passing broke on Monday night.

“Ryan Smyth, Ales Hemsky, Eric Brewer, Steve Staios, Ethan Moreau, Gretz, of course… I have over 200 text messages,” said Stafford. “Anyone in the inner circle has a feeling for the impact Joey had on people lives. How can such a small person have such a large impact? The sports community, the disability community… Is there a person with Down syndrome who has had this kind of an impact in our country? In any country?

“I do believe he’s an iconic Canadian.”

In the heartless world that pro sports can be, Joey became the goat in the horse barn, putting an arm around a player that had just been released, assuring him better days lie ahead, and leaving an impression that no coach, GM or teammate possibly could.

“He changed my life immensely,” Kulchisky said on Tuesday, the morning after Moss passed at an Edmonton hospital. “I was ignorant to Down syndrome – I didn’t understand it and I didn’t want to. He made me become a more patient, sensitive person.

“He made all of us — you included – better people. More understanding.”

As the rosters became fluid, as the once-mighty Oilers and the Edmonton Football Team took their turns at the bottom of the standings, their rosters churning through forgettable name after forgettable name, Moss was a rare constant.

You could look down on the Edmonton Football Team sidelines and ask, ‘Who is No. 76? He’s standing next to Joey.’ Or walking out of what seemed like a decade-long string of Oilers losses, you could think of Joey on the scoreboard belting out the anthem before the game, and there was at least one smile your team gave you that night.

Moss bled blue and orange by winter, green and gold by summer, teaching a generation of Edmonton sports fans about vulnerability, and putting it all out there even when you’re a bit off-key some of the time. Or all of the time.

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Janet & I are saddened to learn about the passing of Joey Moss. Not only was Joey a fixture in the Edmonton dressing room, he was someone I truly considered a friend. We will miss you Joey and you will always live on through our memories. Our thoughts are with Joey’s loved ones.

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With the greatest of all-time… and #99. Oil Country sure won’t be the same without you, Joey. Thanks for always brightening up any day and may you rest easy my friend. pic.twitter.com/p7yGRqTdbk

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Someone who could brighten your day with just a smile or a wink. May you rest in peace Joey, you will be missed by so many. pic.twitter.com/ecuxIBiWPU

It’s OK to blindly love your team, win, lose or draw. And if you’re going to sing “O Canada” in front of 18,000 people and a national TV audience, you’d better not leave anything in the bag. His anthems were legendary, sung from a seat a few rows above the Oilers bench.

“He loved to sing and he loved to dance,” Stafford said. “My wife and her mother took tap dancing lessons. He went in one of their recitals and was the star performer, the hit of the recital. The thing that Joey did was, he gave pure joy to people. He made everyone smile… His two loves were dancing and singing, and they came naturally through his family.”

Along the way, he became a cornerstone of the teams, sent down the hall to the visitor’s dressing room to wish Mathieu Schneider a “Happy Hanukkah!” or to deliver the organizational handshake to a new husband or father. He was as welcome in the dressing rooms of every visiting CFL or NHL team as he was in Edmonton’s.

Part of that was due to his ability to fit in seamlessly.

In sports, if they’re not kidding around with you or pulling your leg, it’s because you haven’t been accepted yet. If they treat you with kid gloves it’s because you are seen to be on the outside, and the closer you get to the heart of a team the sharper your wits had better become.

“If they don’t mess with you, don’t tease you, they don’t like you,” said Mandrusiak.

“What struck me about Joey,” began long-time Edmonton sports columnist Cam Cole, “was how no one treated him like a ‘special needs’ guy. He was just a completely integrated part of the dressing room culture, going about his business, giving and taking chirps from the players. Like the time he was vacuuming the rug, in between reporters’ feet while John Muckler was doing a stand-up interview. Muck interrupted himself to say, ‘—- off, Joey,’ then continued his comments, and Joey simply kept vacuuming, a few feet away.

“He was a part of the scenery, a part of the mood, often happy, sometimes crabby like everyone else. One of the boys.”

Moss’ dancing, bellowing version of La Bamba was legendary inside those rooms, as Moss blasted out a brand of Karaoke that most of those elite athletes, with their muscles and macho, would never have the courage to attempt.

It was while he was dancing a few months back that his hip gave out. “He was dancing by the lunch table,” said Kulchisky. “His body just gave way.”

A broken hip, advancing Alzheimer’s and the pox that is this COVID-19 era combined to hand Joey a final few weeks he surely did not deserve, distanced in palliative care from those loved ones who would have loved to put an arm around him the way he did so many others, so many times.

By the time closed his eyes at age 57, Moss had lived perhaps 30 years longer than doctors would have predicted back in 1963.

“The football club and the Oilers kept him alive that long,” Kulchisky reckoned. “A lot of time, as Down syndrome people age, they just put them in front of a TV in the morning and call them for dinner. Joe woke up every day to a challenge. With the Oilers, at least 40 people a day were counting on him. He had a purpose, Joe.

“That’s what kept him alive, kept him going.”

Until Monday, when the song finally ended for Joseph Moss, Edmonton legend.

They come and they go, in this sports world where the speed of change seems to have quadrupled as my career passes the 30-year mark. There was, for me, no comparable for Joey Moss.

They broke the mould, either before or after they made Joey.

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