COPENHAGEN - They were the two toughest moments in Mathew Dumbas young hockey career. "I really wanted to make this team," a glassy-eyed, 17-year-old Dumba said back in December of 2011 when he was cut by the Canadian national junior team. "It was hard for me to wake up this morning and pack my stuff up. Its emotional, but Ill get through it, but just the experience was great. I had trouble sleeping for sure, I was up every hour and it was just one of those things. Its on your mind constantly. Its tough to go through." One year later he was back in front of the cameras and microphones as one of the final cuts. "I thought I played alright the first two games," an 18-year-old Dumba said then. "I felt I played pretty good the last one. Its tough; its a tough team to make. Im disappointed, but I understand at the same time." A trip to the world junior championship was so close and yet so far. WATCH: Thats Hockey profiles Dumba "Those were my first two times being cut so it was kind of an eye-opener for me, but made me a better player and made me who I am today," said Dumba, who will play a key role on Canadas team this year. "Its tough. Even as a 17-year-old your expectation is to go into camp, play your best and hopefully make the team and thats what I thought I did. Just unfortunate the last two years. Hopefully this years my chance. I have a great opportunity and Im just trying to seize it." "Any time any player goes through that, for two straight years, its always difficult on you and it leaves, maybe, some scars on you," said Brent Sutter, head coach of the Canadian junior squad, who also coached Dumba in Red Deer of the Western Hockey League. MIXED EMOTIONS Dumbas spot on this years Canadian junior team was in jeopardy not because he was on the roster bubble, but because he was in the NHL. The 19-year-old, picked seventh overall by Minnesota in 2012, was struggling to crack the lineup consistently so the Wild loaned him to Hockey Canada. "Even though I felt I should be in the lineup its all based on what the coaches think and what their choices are so as a younger guy Ive just kept with the workouts and the skates and did everything I could to get back in there," said Dumba, who has played 13 games this season, but hasnt suited up since Nov. 23. "Im fortunate enough to have this opportunity and come here and maybe have a lot more minutes than Id have in Minnesota." Dumba is averaging 12:26 of ice time a game with the Wild. "My emotions were a little mixed," he admitted, "you know, you want to be in the NHL and playing every night, but the reality was I wasnt and its awesome to be here and I know Ill have an awesome experience here." "I cant tell you what the conversation was that Minnesota had with Matt when they told him they would assign him to the world junior team," said Sutter, "but Id like to think Matt was pretty excited about that and the fact that now, in his third year, he gets that chance." Dumba insists the feedback from the Wild has been positive. "They really liked my play and thought I was strong as of late. This was purely based on what they thought was best for me and going out and getting that extra experience." The experience in the NHL so far this season has certainly been beneficial to Dumbas evolution. "The consistency day in and day out," said Dumba when asked what has stood out. "They come to practice every day and guys are on their game. You dont really see a guy have a bad game. At most, he has an OK game and he gets better the next game. Its just that consistency. Thats the biggest thing Ive taken away from being a pro." The Regina native has had an opportunity to watch Ryan Suter, the NHLs ice time leader at 29:37 a game, up close. "I think the other night he may have played 35 minutes or something," Dumba said. "I was checking the box score. Its crazy watching those guys and how they play so many minutes at such an elite level. I think its crazy. I got pretty good role models there." And those role models had a message for Dumba as he departed for the world juniors. "All the Canadian guys said, Bring back the gold, but the Americans had a bit of a different conversation with me," Dumba recalled with a chuckle. Canada will wrap up the round robin with a game against the United States on New Years Eve. HE DESERVES IT Its possible Dumba wouldnt be at this point without the influence of Sutter, who twice led the Canadian juniors to gold in 2005 and 2006. "Hes played a huge role, especially last year," said Dumba. "He really pushed me to the limit and made me more reliable, more responsible in my own zone and all over the ice in terms of understanding the game and being an elite player in all areas of the ice." Asked to describe Sutter in one word, Dumba pauses for a few second, laughs, and says, "intense." "I think we both know each other so he knows what I can bring and I know what he expects so I think everything will got smooth." As for Sutter, the no-nonsense taskmaster allows for a moment of sentimentality when talking about how Dumba will finally get a shot at wearing the Maple Leaf at the world juniors after so much heartache. "He deserves it," said Sutter. "Hes been one of the best defencemen not only in the Western Hockey League, but in our country for the last year. Were leaning on him to be a big part of this team." Randal Grichuk Jersey . 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Check out the duster for yourself. Toronto Blue Jays Store .40 metres at the Drake Relays. Drouin, from Corunna, Ont., bested his own record of 2.38 metres set in Aug.LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The way goalie Martin Jones began his NHL career with the Los Angeles Kings, the last thing anyone on either bench expected was for him to give up goals on the first two shots the Dallas Stars took. But Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn scored 1 minute, 20 seconds apart — before the Staples Center seats were even filled — and rookie linemate Valeri Nichushkin got the go-ahead goal on a power play in the second period to propel the Stars to a 5-2 victory over the Kings on Monday night. "Those guys have played extremely well, and we came in here as weak underdogs. But we got off to a great start," goaltender Kari Lehtonen said. "We talked about how well (Jones) has played. But I tried to turn it around the other way, like: He has to lose one day — and hopefully it would be tonight. But hes a real good goalie and fun to watch." Cody Eakin scored an insurance goal with 4:48 remaining against Jones, who stopped 19 shots in his first NHL loss. Shawn Horcoff was awarded an empty-net goal after he was tripped from behind by Drew Doughty in the Kings zone. Lehtonen made 30 saves to record his league-leading 12th road victory, sending the Kings to their second loss in 11 games and just their third in regulation over the last 23. "Were trying to gain points in our conference, and the only way were going to do it is by beating good teams," coach Lindy Ruff said. "Our young defencemen responded well to the challenge." Dallas top line of Benn, Seguin and Nichushkin has accounted for 15 goals and 29 points in its last nine games. This was the second time this season that each of them scored in the same game. It also occurred on Dec. 14 in a 6-4 victory at Winnipeg. "They had a little bit of a rough time in San Jose, and probably were out worst line in the game up there. But they responded by coming back tonight and being the reason we won — which was good to see," Ruff said. "Tylers got elite speed, Jamies got elite puck-handling skills and a shot, and so does Tyler. And the 18-year-old (Nichushkin) is young to be something special," he added. "They bring a lot of good things like size and speed, and thats tough to handle." Justin Williams and Jarret Stoll scored first-period goals for Los Angeles. The Kings played without captain Dustin Brown, who missed his first game of the season due to an illness. Jones, who tied Bob Froeses 31-year-old NHL record on Satturday by winning for the eighth time in his first eight NHL games, was going after Ray Emerys mark of nine straight winning decisions from the start of a career.dddddddddddd But the game began inauspiciously for the Kings 23-year-old goalie, as Seguin beat him high to the stick side from the low slot for the tying goal after getting a cross-ice pass from Benn. Less than 2 1-2 minutes later, Benn put Dallas ahead when he carried the puck into the Kings zone and beat Jones to the short side with a backhander over his left shoulder from deep in the right circle. Seguins 19th goal and Benns 11th ended a streak of 11 straight home games in which the Kings had shut out their opponents in the first period. "I just thought about stopping the next one, which is all you can do because whats done is done," said Jones, who had allowed only eight goals on 234 shots in his other eight games. "Theyve got some good offensive guys and they did a good job, but I didnt think we got big saves when we needed it. When you spot a team like that two goals early, its pretty tough to win." Los Angeles held Dallas to just two more shots on net before Stoll tied it at 16:48 of the period with his fifth goal. Referee Mike Leggo had his arm raised to call a delayed penalty for hooking against Alex Goligoski, when Williams pass caromed off the skate of Dallas Antoine Roussel and Stoll whipped a 30-foot slap shot between Lehtonens pads. But Nichushkin put Dallas ahead to stay at 5:07 of the second with his seventh goal, beating Jones to the glove side with a one-timer from the right circle after getting a cross-ice feed from Seguin. It came while Stoll was serving an interference penalty. The Stars were just 5 for 50 on the power play in their previous 14 games. Dallas defenceman Sergei Gonchar was scratched for the first time this season because of concussion-like symptoms, after getting injured in Saturdays 3-2 shootout loss at San Jose. NOTES: Jones, who has been filling in for the injured Jonathan Quick, came within one victory of tying Quicks franchise record for consecutive wins. ... Despite the loss, the Kings are 9-2-0 this month. Their previous high for wins in December was eight, accomplished seven times. ... The Stars get a three-day Christmas break before facing Nashville on Friday in the opener of a five-game homestand, which includes a rematch with the Kings on New Years Eve. ... Seguin has 13 goals and 21 points in his last 18 games. ' ' '