September 28, 2022


The 20-year-old center, who had five assists in eight NHL games after signing a three-year, entry-level contract with the San Jose Sharks on April 16, could prepare to train instead of play in Edmonton starting in August. 9-20.

“It’s very simple,” Bordeleau said at the National Junior Evaluation Camp at USA Hockey Arena last week. “I think I just got a chance to represent my country again. Obviously, what happened to me those two times was very unfortunate, so I kind of helped redeem it here.”

What happened?

Basically, the coronavirus pandemic cost Bordeleau two chances to play at the World Juniors. This is his third and final shot.

The 2021 WJC was scheduled to be held in a bubble in Edmonton from December 25, 2020 to January 5, 2021. The day before the team left for the tournament, Bordello’s roommate, center John Beecher, tested positive for COVID-19 . Since Bordeleau was a close call, both players were disqualified from the tournament, even though Beecher later tested negative.

The United States won the gold medal.

Bordeleau himself then tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the 2022 WJC, originally scheduled to be played in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alberta, from December 26, 2021 to January 5, 2022. However, after the United States game one game, the tournament was canceled on December 29 due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus. It was later rescheduled to March 19.

Now, the tournament will start all over again, and so will Bordeleau. NHL Network will broadcast each of the qualifying round games played by the United States, as well as select other games.

“I think it’s just going to be good for me to play some real hockey, real, competitive hockey, not just summer hockey, before my NHL camp,” Bordeleau said. “It’s going to be exciting.”

Bordello had 37 points (12 goals, 25 assists) in 37 games as a sophomore for the University of Michigan last season. After the Wolverines were eliminated by the University of Denver in the Frozen Four, he signed an amateur tryout agreement with San Jose of the American Hockey League on April 12. Four days later, Bordeleau signed with the Sharks and was called up to the NHL.

He quickly learned what he needed to do to succeed at the next level.

“I think it’s all about consistency and there’s no room for error, basically,” said Bordeleau, a second-round pick (No. 38) in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. “You know, you loop one time, it’s in the back of the net you. In college, I could get away with it. And in juniors. But there, you can’t [mess] stand up or you are in real trouble.

“Yeah, I think that’s been the biggest thing, honestly. Obviously, with the puck, that’s my strength, just making plays and stuff like that, and obviously I’ve definitely got to make plays quicker. Just my execution has to be much quicker all around. But the defensive side is the biggest adjustment, for sure.”

Bordeleau went on to play for the United States this summer at the 2022 IIHF World Championship in Helsinki and Tampere, Finland, scoring two goals in eight games.

However, it was unclear for a while whether Bordeleau would be available to play in the WJC with the Sharks searching for a general manager to replace Doug Wilson, who resigned on April 7 to focus on his health. Mike Grier was hired on July 5, however, and about a week later, Bordeleau told United States coach Nate Leaman he could leave.

“He knows that opportunity has been taken away from him a few times and he knows how special it is to play in this tournament and play for his country,” Leaman said. “I tip my hat to him. I’ve been messaging him quite a bit this summer and when he said he was on board, I was really excited about it.”

Bordello is excited to be coached with the Sharks next season by David Quinn, who coached him with the United States at the world championships. Quinn was hired by San Jose on July 26.

However, Bordeleau and Quinn go further back than the world championship. Quinn coached at Boston University from 2013-18. Bordello went there on his first college visit.

“It’s a lot of changes right now in the organization, a fresh start, so it’s going to be fun,” Bordeleau said.

This World Juniors will provide good preparation.

“The type of player I am, I don’t need to put on weight,” said Bordello, who is listed at 5-foot-10, 175 pounds. “I just have to get stronger. For me, it’s really about getting more resistance in fights and stuff like that. Playing more hockey won’t be that bad for me.

“I just have to get more explosive, faster, stronger, just be ready to play against adults. I think obviously getting a lot of minutes, a lot of ice time, I think it’s going to be good for me to get ready for camp.”





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