Ritchie to play in Spengler Cup

Former North Delta Minor Hockey Association player competes in major tournament

North Delta native Byron Ritchie of Team Canada (right) collides with an Adler Mannheim defenseman at the 2012 Spengler Cup. Ritchie will play in the 2014 Spengler Cup which begins Boxing Day.

Byron Ritchie of North Delta has been named to the Canadian national men’s hockey team for the Spengler Cup tournament Dec. 26-31 in Davos, Switzerland.

Ritchie, 37, is a five-foot-10, 194-pound forward currently playing for Bern SC of the Switzerland National League. The Canadian national team is a mix of players on European club teams and American Hockey League squads, and will compete against five European club teams.

Ritchie is a veteran of the Spengler Cup. He was a member of the Canadian team which won the tournament in 2012, and also played last year when Canada was eliminated in the semifinal round.

Canada will open the tournament tomorrow (Boxing Day) against HC Davos.

Ritchie was drafted in the seventh round, 165th overall by the Hartford Whalers in the 1995 National Hockey League Entry Draft. After four seasons with the Lethbridge Hurricanes of the Western Hockey League, he played seven seasons of professional hockey in North America, including stints with the Carolina Hurricanes (formerly the Whalers), Florida Panthers, Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks.

He is currently in his eighth season playing in Europe, and his fourth with Bern. In 32 games played this season, he has 10 goals and 29 points, and is second in team scoring.

Surrey North Delta Leader

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