1. News
  2. /
  3. Ice Hockey
  4. /
  5. Former WU Participant invited to NHL Camp
Navigation :

22 July 2009 | in Ice Hockey, Winter Universiade

Former WU Participant invited to NHL Camp

Kuji in action against Slovakia in Harbin


Shuhei Kuji, who was on the Japanese Team Roster at the 2009 Winter Universiade in Harbin, China, and the 2007 Winter Universiade in Torino, Italy might be knocking at the doors of the famous NHL, the National Hockey League, as he was invited at the New York Islanders' Evaluation Camp.

Kuji has never played professional ice hockey in his native country. Until now, he played college hockey with Wasata University and will finish his study in social science in 2010. He plans to join the Oji Eagles of the Asian League upon graduation.

He was one of two college players on the Japanese national team at the 2009 IIHF World Championship Division I while the rest were professionals from the Asian League. The 22-year-old had a good debut with the national team at the Division I tournament in Lithuania, last April, winning bronze and scoring two goals, one assist in five games. He also played on the national team at the 2006 and 2007 Deutschland Cup.

At the 2009 Winter Universiade in Harbin, Kuji scored two goals and gave three assists in the five games he played. Team Japan ended 5th out of 10.

Kuji recognized that he's practicing at a completely new level, and wants to learn his lesson. "I need to become a more determined player on loose pucks and around the net score," Kuji said. "You see how determined all the players are and I see that I need to increase my intensity. It was a great experience for Japanese hockey and for me to be able to come here and realize what NHL hockey culture is all about. There were so many fans, and the great interest around John Tavares and the other prospects. It really was great to see how major hockey is here. I need to continue to work on improving my game and to play hard to attract more fans to watch hockey and to increase the interest in Japanese hockey."

Can Kuji become the first Japanese skater to crack the NHL? Time will tell.

(Source: IIHF)


 Shuhei Kuji, after the WU, the NHL next?

Russia wins final gold medal of Winter Universiade 2019
The home country wrapped up a very successful edition of the Universiade in Siberia, by...
American families travel thousands of miles to cheer on Team USA
The USA women's ice hockey team's supporters made their presence known in the compact and...
US Hockey teams cool as ice going into Krasnoyarsk
The U.S. women’s Ice-Hockey team that will compete at Winter Universiade 2019 includes four...
Russian Ice-Hockey team aiming for triple triumph
Russian Ice Hockey Men's Team announced for Krasnoyarsk 2019   KRASNOYARSK -- Having won the...
Final Team Selections for Ice-Hockey, Curling, Bandy
Russia, Kazakhstan and Canada lead the field    Women’s ice-hockey teams from Russia, Canada...
Student Hockey Challenge gets a big thumbs up
Dinamo wins tournament as Krasnoyarsk gets ready for Real Winter The final clash of the...