IceDog will make most of invite

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:43 AM ET

Cody Bass will not have to earn the respect of Hockey Canada next week at the world junior selection camp in Calgary.

The captain of the Mississauga IceDogs already has it. Despite being out of the IceDogs lineup with an internal oblique muscle injury since Nov. 19, Bass was invited to the camp. Bass said he will not play for the IceDogs this week but figured he can be ready for on-ice sessions at camp on Sunday.

"It's going to be tough to jump back into it having had no game experience," Bass, a 6-foot, 203-pound centre, said. "But to have this week to get ready will help a lot. I'm going to go out there and work my butt off."

Why did chief scout Jim Hammett and national junior coach Craig Hartsburg decide Bass was worthy of an invitation despite not having played in a while?

An Ottawa Senators prospect, Bass has played for Canada before and Hartsburg loved him at the development camp in the summer. Bass is an excellent defensive player, one who can be handed that role at the world junior and carry it out properly.

Hartsburg would like to give the job to someone who is a natural rather than tell a scorer he has to be a checker for two weeks.

"He brings the intangibles you need," Hartsburg said. "He deserves to be in camp based on hard he plays. He could fit the role we are looking at."

NO WORLD JUNIOR FOR TLUSTY

Maple Leafs prospect Jiri Tlusty, who plays for Hartsburg with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, will not play in the world junior because of a high ankle sprain. The Czech Republic native and 2006 Leafs first-round pick has seven goals and three assists in 13 games since being sent to the Soo by Toronto.

BRIEFLY

With some big OHL trades already done, rumours are rampant the Peterborough Petes could move Steve Downie and/or Daniel Ryder. Expect general manager Jeff Twohey to bide his time, if he trades either at all ... Neither Hartsburg nor Hammett expect NHL players Jordan Staal and Marc-Edouard Vlasic to be made available for the world junior.


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