A 3rd round pick, 90th overall in the 2021 draft, Munzenberger had a strong start to his U20 tournament, winning the Player of the Game for team Germany in a 3-1 loss to Finland.
It was a pretty tightly contested game, and the Germans did well in keeping the score close as well as generating some chances. Notably, Munzenberger was the primary offensive option on the back end, quarterbacking the power play and logging a lot of icetime. This was a pretty pleasant surprise for me, as Muzenberger has a reputation as a more aggressive defensive player, so his usage in this role is really encouraging for his 2-way upside.
Munzenberger has been playing in Vermont of the NCAA, which seems like a good place for the young player to develop over the next 2-3 seasons. His point totals in college wouldn’t suggest this kind of offensive deployment, and I wouldn’t expect him to be a power play option at the NHL level. That said, Munzenberger showed some quality and smarts in the Boxing Day opener, making nice decisions with passes and utilizing his backhand.
He’ll continue to play a major role for the Germans in this tournament, and we should see him gain a lot more recognition across the Oilers fan base, especially if the Germans can continue to show well in the coming weeks. This is the last year that he will be eligible for this tournament but it’s possible we see him suit up for Germany in World Championships before making an earnest push for the NHL.Read next
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