Camping in Cowtown

ERIC FRANCIS -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:15 AM ET

It looks like Calgary will play host to Team Canada's training camp in preparation for next month's world hockey championships.

"The ice is booked and it's 95 percent certain we'll have a four- or five-day camp here in mid-April," a Hockey Canada spokesman said.

"The coaches just need to get together, finalize everything and, by week's end, they'll figure out the exact dates."

Camp could open as early as April 11 or 12 and would wrap up as late as April 19, so Canada can travel east to play exhibition games pencilled in for Quebec City and Halifax. The team will fly overseas on April 22 or 23 for an exhibition game in Latvia in preparation for the tourney, which starts April 30 when Canada plays Latvia in Vienna/Innsbruck.

Hockey Canada officials will hold a press conference today or tomorrow to announce the management and coaching staff to head up a squad gunning for its third straight title. Despite concerns over the health of his mother, who is battling cancer, Wayne Gretzky is expected to be announced GM of the team, with a similar host of coaches he had in Salt Lake City and the recent World Cup. One notable addition will be Hockey Canada's fulltime coach Marc Habscheid,

Officials were unsure whether camp at Father Bauer Arena would be open to the public but access likely will be strictly limited.

It's also up in the air how many of the country's top stars will elect to suit up for the first time this year to represent their country, including the likes of Joe Sakic, Jarome Iginla, Steve Yzerman and Martin Brodeur.


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