World Junior Hockey: Switzerland Watchlist

Tom Szczerbowski

Here is who we're keen to see at this year's tourney

Here are the Swiss players we'll be keeping an eye on at the 2013 WJHC starting December 26th. This is not a ranking of their top players or prospects, just the guys that we're interested in scouting and assessing their future fantasy hockey potential.

Top 5

#5 Mirco Muller, D (2013 Eligible) - He has good size at 6'3" & 187 and is handling himself admirably as a rookie in the WHL with 2+16=18 in 34 games for Everett. NHL Central Scouting has him ranked at an impressive #7 amongst WHL skaters. He already has some NLA (top Swiss league) games under his belt but doesn't own much international experience. The Swiss have some offensive talent, so lets see if Muller can lead the attack and get them the puck.

#9 Tanner Richard, C (TB-2012-3rd-#71) - He is an assist-machine for Guelph (OHL) with 71 assists over 72 games this season & last. He has a Canadian father who played professionally in Switzerland so he's a bit of a hybrid and we're looking for him to take on a big role centering the top line in Ufa.

#11 Christoph Bertschy, C (MIN-2012-6th-#158) - Gained valuable experience playing in the WJC & NLA last year as a 17-year-old, which is nothing to sneeze at. Is struggling to put up points this year with just 2+2=4 in 27 games for Bern (NLA) but has looked good against his peers with 10+5=15 in 12 internationals so far this year.

#4 Phil Baltisberger, D (2014 Eligible) - He just recently turned 17 but is already in his second season in the Swiss 2nd Tier (NLB) and this will be his second WJC. It's hard to tell how much offensive upside he has as he's always playing above his age group.

#10 Alessio Bertaggia, RW (Undrafted 2011 & 2012) - A small (5'9" & 163) and creative player who is not easily intimidated, he's in the second WHL season and leads Brandon with 16+18=34 in 29 games. I've enjoyed watching him in the W and am curious if he can bring his high energy game to the world stage. He's my darkhorse pick to have a breakout tournament for the Swiss.

Others to Watch:

#22 Sven Andrighetto, RW (Undrafted 2011 & 2012) - Another smallish offensive type, Andrighetto had 36 goals in the Q last year and has 20 in 28 games so far this year. He sits top 10 in Q scoring with 20+30=50 in 28 games.

#12 Lino Martschini, RW (Undrafted 2011 & 2012) - The former Peterborough Pete make Alessio & Sven look like giants as he measures up at just 5'6" & 143 but is the top U20 scorer in the NLA this year with 6+4=10 in 24 games.

#16 Sandro Zangger, RW (Undrafted 2012) - Longshot to show much but worth keeping an eye out for this kid as he is the leading U20 goal scorer in NLB with 11+7=18 in 21 games and was his country's leading scorer at the WJAC this year.

Read the Team Switzerland preview by SBNation's Bruce Peter here.

Anyone I missed?... let me know in the comments.

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