The Russian Hockey Federation has named eight NHLers to their 2016 World Championship roster.
National team coach Oleg Znarok continues to evaluate KHL talent as Team Russia plays pre-tournament exhibitions in Slovakia. After the exhibition games, the team returns to Novogorsk outside Moscow — where, along with St. Petersburg, the 2016 tournament will take place — and cuts will be made.
The players who remain will be joined by the eight announced NHLers to represent their country at the 2016 installment of the tournament, where they’ll look to win gold on home ice.
Alexander Burmistrov, Winnipeg Jets
Sergei Kalinin, New Jersey Devils
Viktor Tikhonov, Arizona Coyotes
Sergei Plotnikov, Arizona Coyotes
Nail Yakupov, Edmonton Oilers
Alexei Emelin, Montreal Canadiens
Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
Semyon Varlamov, Colorado Avalanche
Meanwhile in Slovakia, here’s the roster that’s playing in exhibition games that will form the rest of the World Championship roster.
Vladislav Kartayev, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl
Andrei Loktionov, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl
Maxim Karpov, Dynamo Moskva
Daniil Apalkov, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl
Vladimir Galuzin, Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod
Yegor Averin, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl
Nikita Gusev, SKA St. Petersburg
Vadim Shipachyov, SKA St. Petersburg
Yevgeni Dadonov, SKA St. Petersburg
Sergei Shumakov, Sibir Novosibirsk
Maxim Shalunov, Sibir Novosibirsk
Stepan Sannikov, Sibir Novosibirsk
Albert Yarullin, Ak Bars Kazan
Ziyat Paigin, HK Sochi
Yegor Yakovlev, SKA St. Petersburg
Ilya Lyubushkin, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl
Anton Belov, SKA St. Petersburg
Slava Voynov, SKA St. Petersburg
Yaroslav Dyblenko, Spartak Moskva
Igor Ustinski, Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg
Igor Shestyorkin, SKA St. Petersburg
Alexander Sharychenkov, Dynamo Moskva
These are the guys from which the rest of the roster will be culled, as well as the potential for late additions from CSKA Moscow and Metallurg Mg, who are in the Gagarin Cup Final right now. That group could include players like Alexander Radulov, Sergei Mozyakin and Nikita Zaitsev.
One of the interesting threads here is that this team will feature a majority of players who are competing for the remaining spots on the Team Russia World Cup roster. 16 players have been named to that roster so far and all of them are NHLers. Competing for those spots will be a few NHLers but mostly a large group of KHLers.
The players who wind up on the Russian World Championship roster may be given their final test before it’s determined if they’ll play for their country at the World Cup in Toronto.
The tournament kicks off May 6 in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia.
Dustin Nelson writes about news and the Minnesota Wild for The Hockey Writers.