Although the Winnipeg Jets are not in the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs, there are four members of the 2021-2022 Jets who are playing spring hockey for their respective countries at the 2022 IIHF World Championship in Finland.
Those players are Pierre-Luc Dubois and Adam Lowry, who are representing Canada, Nate Schmidt who is competing for the United States for the first time in his career, and Nikolaj Ehlers who competes for Denmark.
Another member of the Jets organization has joined these four players and made the trip to Finland to skate for his country. That player is Manitoba Moose defenseman, Leon Gawanke who will suit up for Germany for the second time in his young career.
Winnipeg Jets Prospect Leon Gawanke has joined Team Germany at the World Championship
The twenty-two-year-old defenseman was a late addition to the German roster. He was added after the Moose lost their second-round Calder Cup Playoff series in five games to the Milwaukee Admirals.
Gawanke had an outstanding year in AHL action for the Moose as he had the most points out of any defenseman on the team with 36 (10 goals, 26 assists). This point total ranked him fifteenth among all AHL defensemen.
This is also Gawanke’s second year in a row representing his country at the Worlds. Last year, Gawanke played in all ten tournament games for Germany and had two goals, including a clutch goal in the final minute of the quarterfinals to tie the game, en route to a fourth-place finish.
Gawanke made his debut at this current tournament in Germany’s 9-4 win against Italy on Friday. He finished the game with no points, one shot on goal, and a plus-one plus/minus.
Germany has two more games in the preliminary stage remaining as they take on Kazhakstan this morning and finish with an important matchup against Switzerland on Tuesday.
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Currently, all of the five members of the Jets’ organization at this tournament and their teams sit in the top-four of their respective groups with a couple of games left before round-robin play concludes and the quarterfinals begin. This is great news considering the top-four teams in each group qualify for the quarterfinals that will begin on May 26.
You can find the official tournament homepage that includes the full schedule and standings by clicking the link here.
Winnipeg Jets Fans: Do you think Gawanke and Germany will medal at the Worlds? Leave your comments below!