Konecny go­ing to world cham­pi­onship

The Chatham Daily News - - SPORTS -

CAL­GARY – Philadel­phia Fly­ers rookie for­ward Travis Konecny of Clachan was named Wed­nes­day to Canada’s men’s team for the 2017 IIHF world cham­pi­onship.

The squad will have at least five re­turn­ing play­ers from last year’s gold-medal team when they hit the ice.

Hockey Canada has named its first 18 play­ers, with a hand­ful that were on the 2016 cham­pi­onship team.

Konecny, 20, had 11 goals, 18 as­sists and 49 penalty min­utes in 70 games with the Fly­ers.

For­wards Mark Scheifele, Matt Duch­ene and Ryan O’Reilly, de­fence­man Michael Mathe­son and goal­tender Calvin Pickard re­turn to de­fend gold, while Duch­ene and O’Reilly are in po­si­tion to three-peat as world cham­pi­ons af­ter also win­ning in 2015.

“It’s al­ways spe­cial when you get to rep­re­sent your coun­try, and you can see it from the qual­ity of our ini­tial list of play­ers who will join us at worlds,” said gen­eral man­ager Ron Hex­tall.

The 18 play­ers se­lected con­sist of 11 for­wards, five de­fence­men and two goalies.

The Fly­ers and Colorado Avalanche have the most play­ers on the Cana­dian squad with four apiece.

Fly­ers for­wards Sean Cou­turier, Wayne Sim­monds and Claude Giroux also made the ros­ter. Avalanche for­wards Nathan MacK­in­non and Duch­ene, de­fence­man Tyson Bar­rie and Pickard will join them.

Round­ing out the for­wards are Alex Kil­lorn, Bray­den Point and Jeff Skin­ner.

The rest of the blue line con­sists of Calvin De Haan, Ja­son Demers and Josh Mor­ris­sey while Eric Com­rie fills out the goal­tend­ing du­ties.

Head coach Jon Cooper will be joined on the bench by Ger­ard Gal­lant, Dave Hak­stol and Dave King when Canada opens the world cham­pi­onship against the Czech Repub­lic on May 5 in Paris.

The tour­na­ment has two host cities, in­clud­ing Cologne, Ger­many.

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