Gold. Gold. Silver.
That’s the hardware Team Canada has brought home from the last three IIHF World Hockey Championships, a nice change from the five-year medal drought that had come just before.
The squad looking to keep the streak going this year in Denmark includes players from all three of those teams.
Leading the way and wearing the “C” will be Edmonton Oilers star Connor McDavid. The 21-year-old is a nominee for this year’s Ted Lindsay Award, given to the NHL’s most outstanding player as voted by his peers. McDavid was a member of Canada’s gold medal-winning team in 2016.
Returnees will also serve as alternate captains. Ryan O’Reilly of the Buffalo Sabres has played in five world championships, including the last three, while Brayden Schenn of the St. Louis Blues was his teammate in 2015 and 2017.
Also coming back from the 2015 champion team are Jordan Eberle (New York Islanders) and Aaron Ekblad (Florida Panthers). Ryan Murray (Columbus Blue Jackets) is looking to add to his 2016 gold while Colton Parayko (St. Louis Blues) joins O’Reilly and Schenn in wanting to improve upon last year’s result.
There are also a few new faces to watch, including Matthew Barzal, a Calder Trophy nominee for NHL Rookie of the Year. But he’s not the youngest player on the team. That title goes to 18-year-old goaltender Michael DiPietro, who had been one of the final cuts from Team Canada for the 2018 World Junior Championship in December. Drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in 2017, he spent the season with the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires.
Playing in Group B in Herning, Denmark, Canada will open the tournament on Friday at 10:15 a.m. ET against the United States. That will be followed by games against South Korea (Sunday May 6, 6:15 a.m. ET), the host Danes (Monday May 7, 2:15 p.m. ET), Norway (Thursday May 10, 2:15 p.m. ET), Finland (Saturday May 12, 2:15 p.m. ET), Latvia (Monday May 14, 2:15 p.m. ET) and Germany (Tuesday May 15, 10:15 a.m. ET).
The playoff round begins on Thursday, May 17 with the top four teams in each group advancing to the crossover quarterfinals. The medal matches will be played on Sunday, May 20 in Copenhagen.
Team Canada played its lone pre-tournament game on Monday in Riga, Latvia, defeating the home team 6-1.
All of Team Canada’s games will be broadcast by TSN and RDS.
Team Canada 2018 World Championship Roster:
Michael DiPietro (Windsor Spitfires)
Darcy Kuemper (Arizona Coyotes)
Curtis McElhinney (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Thomas Chabot (Ottawa Senators)
Joel Edmundson (St. Louis Blues)
Aaron Ekblad (Florida Panthers)
Ryan Murray (Columbus Blue Jackets)
Darnell Nurse (Edmonton Oilers)
Colton Parayko (St. Louis Blues)
Ryan Pulock (New York Islanders)
Josh Bailey (New York Islanders)
Mathew Barzal (New York Islanders)
Anthony Beauvillier (New York Islanders)
Pierre-Luc Dubois (Columbus Blue Jackets)
Jordan Eberle (New York Islanders)
Bo Horvat (Vancouver Canucks)
Tyson Jost (Colorado Avalanche)
Connor McDavid (Edmonton Oilers)
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Edmonton Oilers)
Brayden Schenn (St. Louis Blues)
Jaden Schwartz (St. Louis Blues)
Ryan O’Reilly (Buffalo Sabres)
Jean-Gabriel Pageau (Ottawa Senators)