WHL: Tri-City Americans to test import draft waters

July 2, 2013 

The Tri-City Americans will weigh their options today before selecting a player in the CHL Import Draft.

The Americans, who pick 43rd out of the 60 CHL teams, are looking to replace Swedish forward Malte Strömwall, who has elected to remain in his home country to play.

Tri-City will return Czech defenseman Michal Plutnar, and can add a second European player to its roster through the draft.

“We have a scout in Europe and others who give us input,” Americans general manager Bob Tory said. “We have a list of players we like. If I can’t get a player who would be a top six forward or a top four defenseman, I’m not going to take them. Unless they can make a big difference, there’s a chance we won’t draft anyone.”

The Vancouver Giants hold the first pick of the Import Draft, while the Portland Winterhawks have the 60th pick.

While Tory tries to add to the roster, four Americans players will heading off to NHL camps.

Defenseman Zach Yuen leaves today for the Dallas Stars camp, while Troy Trombley is one of four goalies invited to the Edmonton Oilers camp, which runs today through Tuesday. Connor Rankin will take part in the Pittsburgh Penguins camp in September.

Beau McCue leaves Monday for the Toronto Maple Leafs camp, that will run Monday night through July 12.

“I had talked to them earlier in the season and the same scout (Roy Stasiuk) who talked to me, called and invited me to camp,” said McCue, who was enjoying the 72-degree weather in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Tuesday afternoon. “It was really exciting to get that call. With the injury this year and the flow of my game coming to a halt and I had to restart, this invitation was a confidence booster, you could say.”

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