Team Canada welcomes three D, four forwards to round out 23-player roster
CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s World Cup of Hockey roster is now set, with the final seven selections made by Team Canada’s management group, led team general manager Doug Armstrong (Sarnia, Ont./St. Louis, NHL).
“The decisions weren’t easy, and with the depth of player talent we have in Canada, we knew it would be a difficult process to finalize our roster – but it’s what we signed up for, and we feel we’ve been able to put together the right balance to create a winning team,” said Armstrong. “Whether we’re talking the Stanley Cup, World Junior gold, World Championship gold, or even the last World Cup – these players have been there and know what it takes to be successful. And they’ll be ready to make the nation proud come September.”
Three defencemen – Brent Burns (Barrie, Ont./San Jose, NHL), Jake Muzzin (Woodstock, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL), and Alex Pietrangelo (King City, Ont./St. Louis, NHL) join the four previously-named blueliners (Doughty, Keith, Vlasic, and Weber).
Rounding out the red-and-white’s offense are Matt Duchene (Haliburton, Ont./Colorado, NHL) and Brad Marchand (Hammonds Plains, N.S./Boston, NHL) who added to Canada’s gold-medal haul last Sunday at the IIHF World Championship, as well as Claude Giroux (Hearst, Ont./Philadelphia, NHL) and Joe Thornton (St. Thomas, Ont./San Jose, NHL).
“This is one of the two best things I achieved in my career – the other is making the Olympic team, which felt just as good as winning Olympic gold,” said Duchene, who is looking forward to playing at the World Cup in Toronto, just under three hours south of his hometown of Haliburton. “I have so much respect for Canadian players; to be selected from among all of that talent is a feeling I just can’t really describe. It’s a big reason why you play – to represent your country is an absolute honour, and so unbelievable.”
Of Team Canada’s 23 players, 14 have combined to earn 22 Olympic gold medals, while 18 have won gold at World Juniors. Thornton was a member of the last Team Canada to play – and win – the World Cup of Hockey in 2004.
“Anytime you can play for Canada it’s a dream come true; the pride, the honour, it’s extremely exciting. Being named to the World Cup team is an incredible feeling – it’s tough to put into words,” said Marchand, who like Duchene is fresh off a gold-medal win at the World Championship and is no stranger to coming together with new teammates and a new coaching staff for a short-term, high-stakes competition like the World Cup. “[The key to success] is you have to believe and be confident in your abilities, and be willing to do what it takes to win and make the sacrifices. [The World Cup] brings together the top players in the world – and that’s what makes them the top players; they do what they need to win.”
Ottawa to host Team Canada training camp, pre-tournament game
Ottawa and Canadian Tire Centre will welcome Team Canada’s World Cup of Hockey training camp and host a pre-tournament game against Team USA this September.
From Sept. 4-11, Canada’s best players will descend on Ottawa to prepare for the 2016 World Cup of Hockey. The training camp will culminate in a pre-tournament game between Team Canada and Team USA on Sept. 10 at Canadian Tire Centre at 7 p.m. ET.
Tickets are now available on a priority-access basis to Ottawa Senators’ season-seat members until June 8.
Tickets will be available to the general public starting on June 9, and range from $35 to $175, with proceeds going back to supporting the development of hockey across the country. In addition to the pre-tournament game and training camp, Hockey Canada has announced it will host a series of hockey development activities in the National Capital Region to coincide with the timing of the Sept. 10 match-up. Additional details on those activities and on how fans can purchase tickets will be released at a future date.
In June 2015, Hockey Canada announced the Team Canada management group for the World Cup of Hockey comprised of Armstrong (Sarnia, Ont./St. Louis, NHL) as general manager, with assistance from Marc Bergevin (Montreal/Montreal, NHL), Rob Blake (Simcoe, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL), Ken Holland (Vernon, B.C./Detroit, NHL), Bob Murray (Kingston, Ont./Anaheim, NHL), and Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), Hockey Canada’s vice-president of hockey operations and national teams. Tom Renney (Cranbrook, B.C.), as president and CEO of Hockey Canada, and Scott Smith (Bathurst, N.B.), the organization’s chief operating officer, round out Team Canada’s World Cup of Hockey management group.
The coaching staff was announced in November 2015, and is comprised of head coach Mike Babcock (Saskatoon, Sask./Toronto, NHL) and assistant coaches Claude Julien (Orleans, Ont./Boston, NHL), Barry Trotz (Dauphin, Man./Washington, NHL), Joel Quenneville (Windsor, Ont./Chicago, NHL), Bill Peters (Three Hills, Alta./Carolina, NHL), and Hockey Canada’s Misha Donskov (London, Ont.), as well as Andrew Brewer (Fredericton, N.B./Toronto, NHL) as video coach.
The World Cup of Hockey returns in September 2016 in Toronto, where eight teams, comprised of the world’s best hockey players, will compete for a best-on-best international hockey championship. The World Cup of Hockey is a joint effort of the NHLPA and the NHL, in cooperation with the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF). It is expected that more than 150 of the best players in the NHL will participate in this tournament.