Canuck cut hard to take

Team Canada members Mark Scheifele (left to right), Ryan Strome and Scott Harrington rest after...

Team Canada members Mark Scheifele (left to right), Ryan Strome and Scott Harrington rest after posing for a team photo at the WinSport Canada Athletic and Ice Complex in Calgary, Alta., Dec. 14, 2011. (LYLE ASPINALL/QMI Agency)

SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:47 PM ET

CALGARY - Tyler Bunz knew the call was coming.

But that didn’t make it easier to answer.

The Medicine Hat Tigers goaltender, who surrendered two goals on six shots against a Canada West university mixed team Tuesday night, was among Team Canada’s 13 cuts announced Wednesday morning.

“It’s tough, but the performance I had wasn’t good enough,” the Edmonton Oilers prospect said. “I got over it last night and kinda expected the call this morning.

“Two goals on six shots — it’s not good enough at this camp, it’s not good enough at any level — especially against a CIS team. It’s going to be a lot harder competition against the Russians, Finland and Sweden.

“In my mind, I think they made the right decision. Wedgewood really played well, and I just wasn’t good enough at camp.

“I wish everyone the best. I’m still Canadian and still a Canadian fan, and I hope they bring home gold this year.”

Bunz and Phoenix Coyotes draft pick Louis Domingue (Quebec Remparts) were the two goaltenders released.

“You spend 19 years of your life for this moment, and it comes down to 90 minutes of hockey,” Bunz said. “It’s frustrating I wasn’t able to play my best and secure a spot.

“But there’s still a lot of hockey left in my career. This is just one major speedbump I have to overcome.”

There were more than a few shell-shocked faces as players were cut from a team for the first time in their young careers.

Kitchener Rangers defenceman Ryan Murphy, a first-round pick of the Carolina Hurricanes, said his heart sank when the phone rang.

“Getting woken up at 6 a.m. isn’t an easy thing, and knowing it’s you and not your roommate is also not an easy thing,” Murphy said.

“But I’ll be back next year maybe, and, hopefully, make the team then.”

Murphy, known for his offensive skills, said he regrets trying to play a safe, defensive game in camp.

“They knew my offensive abilities were there, and I was trying to be as defensively strong as I could,” Murphy said.

“I look back at it, and I wish I was playing like myself. Maybe I didn’t have to change my game. Maybe I just had to be aware of other aspects of my game.”

Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Brad Ross was among a trio of Portland Winterhawks (along with Ty Rattie and Joseph) sent packing before the sun came up.

“I was up watching all the Twitter, seeing who was getting cut,” Ross said.

“Morrow texted me, and then Ty texted me. I knew there was only two guys left (to be cut), and I was hoping it wasn’t going to be me.”

Ross, who was injured and unable to skate on the opening day of camp, said he was playing catchup from the start.

“Things like that happen, and I just tried to overcome it and put my best foot forward, but it didn’t work out,” Ross said.

But with the Winterhawks getting the nucleus of their team back, Ross said he’s now focused on another tournament — the Memorial Cup.

“I thought there was a good chance all three of us could make it,” Ross said. “But to have none of us make it, it really stings.

“We have a great team back in Portland, and, similar to last year, we have a good shot of winning the whole thing.”

CUTS

Brett Bulmer

“I’m disappointed. I thought I had a really good shot and just wanted to do everything they asked, and make sure I gave myself the best opportunity.

“It was a good experience and showed me how I can get better."

Louis Domingue

“It’s always tough to get cut from a team, especially when you want to represent your country.

“For sure it’s disappointing, but I’ve got no regrets."

Phil Di Giusppe

“(The coaches) said I played well but they had a tough decision and had a couple cuts to be made.

“It’s a great experience with all the great players. I thought I did a lot better than I was supposed to do.

“But I have the opportunity to come back next year and some of the guys don’t, so I can take what I got out of the experience and bring that back with me next year."

Tyler Toffoli

“I’m going to go back to junior and keep scoring goals.

“My goal is to win the scoring title again and be the best player."

Cody Ceci

“I thought I gave myself a good opportunity to make the team. But at the same time, there’s tons of great players at the camp and I knew it would be a really tough squad to crack.

“(The coaches) said I always have next year.

“It was a good opportunity and I had a lot of fun at the camp. It’s going to give me a lot of confidence going into the rest of the season.

“I woke up at six, sat there hoping the phone wouldn’t ring. Unfortunately, it did."

Alex Petrovic

“I was kinda in a deep sleep. I had a dream of actually waking up and making the team, but I got the call. Obviously, it’s a heartbreak.

“It was wide open and everybody played really good. It could have gone either way but obviously, it didn’t go my way."

Christian Thomas

“You’re just sitting there waiting and hoping you don’t get that call and that you wake up in the morning and you’re on the team.

“I felt it went pretty well but there’s a lot of competition here.

“I thought I did enough but it was up to the coaches and they decided to go with some other players."

Joe Morrow

“You have to respect their decision. I’m not a coach so I don’t know how to pick a team very well.

“Being in my home town in front of my family and all of my friends, it would have been a lot of fun.

“But I’ve got next year too. I did everything I can and I don’t have any regrets."

Ty Rattie

“I actually got some sleep — just being tired from the camp.

“But the wakeup call wasn’t fun.

“I thought I had three good games, but at that point, you can’t do anything. At that point, it was up to them.

“To come home for Christmas in three days and see all those (world junior) commercials, it’s going to be tough.

“But I have next year and I’m looking forward to that."

Philip Danault

“I did very well at this camp. I gave it all I got. I respect their decision.

"I was suprised a little bit but I am only 18 and I will be back here next year in good shape again.”

scott.fisher@sunmedia.ca

On Twitter: @SUNScottFisher


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