CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada, in collaboration with National Men’s Team general manager David Nonis, announced a first group of 19 players that will represent Canada at the 2011 IIHF World Championship, which will take place April 29-May 15 in Bratislava and Kosice, Slovakia.
Nonis, along with assistant general managers Rob Blake (Simcoe, Ont.) and Bob Murray (Kingston, Ont./Anaheim, NHL) and Brad Pascall, Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations/national teams, have been meeting regularly over the past few weeks to assemble Canada’s roster and staff for the upcoming IIHF World Championship.
In consultation with the management group, head coach Ken Hitchcock and associate coaches Scott Arniel and Peter DeBoer, Nonis confirmed a first group of 19 players. Additional players could also be added after the first round of the NHL playoffs.
Teams can officially name up to 23 players, including three goaltenders, for the preliminary round at the IIHF World Championship. After the preliminary round, teams can have up to 25 players on their official rosters.
Canada’s roster to date includes ten players with IIHF World Championship experience, including Rick Nash, a gold medallist and MVP in 2007. The other nine players with IIHF World Championship experience are Burns, Dubnyk, Duchene, Eberle, Phaneuf, Schenn, Spezza, Tavares and Zajac. The roster is also highlighted by one Olympic gold medalist (Nash), eight IIHF World Junior Championship gold medalists (Dubnyk, Eberle, Kane, Ladd, Phaneuf, Pietrangelo, Schenn, Tavares) and a total of 16 players who have already represented Canada on the international stage. It will mark the first international appearance for three players: goaltender James Reimer, defenceman Marc Methot and forward Chris Stewart.
“We are extremely happy with this first group of players that Canada will be counting on at the IIHF World Championship,” said Nonis. “The players and staff are all thrilled about having this opportunity and we are looking forward to getting started later this month.”
The team will assemble in Europe on April 22, and play in two pre-competition games, on April 24 vs. France in Paris and on April 27 vs. the Czech Republic in Prague. Canada will be based in Kosice, Slovakia for the preliminary round.