5 Players to Watch at the 2022 Memorial Cup

The 2022 Memorial Cup kicked off Monday and continues through Wednesday from Saint John, New Brunswick, and plenty of stars will make their mark in this historic tournament.

The four teams that qualified for the tournament were the host Saint John Sea Dogs, the WHL representative Edmonton Oil Kings, the OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs, and the QMJHL’s Shawinigan Cataractes. 

The Sea Dogs will face the Bulldogs in the tournament opener this evening.

Below you can find five players in this tournament to watch closely, all having bright futures ahead of them in the NHL.

Kaiden Guhle (Oil Kings – 1st round draft pick of the Montreal Canadiens in 2020)

The Edmonton Oil Kings’ top defenseman was acquired at this year’s trade deadline from the Prince Albert Raiders, and that deal has paid dividends. Kaiden Guhle was named the 2022 WHL Playoff MVP. Guhle put up 25 points in 25 regular-season games for the Oil Kings while adding 16 points in 18 playoff games. For a 6’2 defenseman, Guhle moves well and will be a significant factor in whether or not the Oil Kings can win their first Memorial Cup since 2014. 

Mason McTavish (Bulldogs – 1st round draft pick of the Anaheim Ducks in 2021)

Much like Guhle, Mason McTavish was acquired by his current team ahead of the OHL’s trade deadline, where the Peterborough Pete’s got a haul in return for the center from the Hamilton Bulldogs. Logan Morrison, an undrafted center, led the Bulldogs in scoring during their playoff run with 39 points. Still, McTavish tallied 29 in 19 games and has a high ceiling after being selected third overall by the Anaheim Ducks last year. The 6’1 center has a great release and motor, which will likely have him playing an integral role in this prestigious tournament. 

Mavrik Bourque (Cataractes – 1st round draft pick of the Dallas Stars in 2020)

Mavrik Bourque won the Guy Lafleur Trophy as the QMJHL postseason MVP with the Shawinigan Cataractes, tallying 25 points in 16 playoff games. The Dallas Stars 2020 first-round selection finished the regular season with 68 points in just 31 games, and there’s a lot to like about what he brings to the table. Bourque has an elite hockey IQ and is a great distributor. He’s not super flashy, but if you watch closely, you’ll be impressed with the little things he does every shift. 

William Dufour (Sea Dogs – 5th round draft pick of the New York Islanders in 2020)

The Saint John Sea Dogs forward finished with the second-highest point total during the regular season in the QMJHL with 116, sitting behind only Joshua Roy with 119. William Dufour still managed to capture the league’s MVP after being awarded the 2022 Michel-Briére Trophy. Dufour wasn’t a first-round selection like the other four names on this list, but there’s no doubt that the New York Islanders draft pick has made a name for himself and should continue doing so in the Memorial Cup with the host team. 

Sebastian Cossa (Oil Kings – 1st round draft pick of the Detroit Red Wings in 2021)

The first goaltender on this list is Sebastian Cossa, who helped lead the Oil Kings to this point with spectacular play between the pipers. Cossa posted a .913 save percentage during the regular season, following that up with an even better postseason SV% of .919. The Detroit Red Wings’ potential goalie of the future is one to keep an eye on in this tournament. His net is where the Oil Kings will hold a significant edge.