Dreger: Canada targets younger group for world championship

Darren Dreger

4/15/2010 4:26:10 PM

Steven Stamkos and John Tavares headline Canada's roster for the upcoming World Hockey Championship in Germany.

Mark Messier and Canada's management team have as many as 15 confirmed players, with Stamkos and Tavares a clear indication that Hockey Canada has targeted a younger group for this year's tournament.

Edmonton Oilers prospect Jordan Eberle is also expected to make the trip to Germany as an alternate, but could very well play his way on to Canada's team the same way Jonathan Toews did in 2007.

Toews recorded seven points in nine games and helped Canada earn gold while becoming the first Canadian to win both a World Junior Championship and a World Championship in the same year.

Anaheim's Corey Perry and Calgary's Rene Bourque have also committed to playing, as has veteran forward Ray Whitney, providing some veteran presence up front.

Other names to look for include Steve Ott of the Dallas Stars, Tampa Bay's Steve Downie and Atlanta's Rich Peverley.

Defensively, Toronto's Francois Beauchemin will make his international debut for Canada, while New York's Marc Staal and Minnesota's Brent Burns have also confirmed their intent to play.

Flames defenceman Mark Giordano has also accepted an invite.

St Louis Blues goaltender Chris Mason is the only goalie on the Canadian roster at this point.  However, another two goaltenders, two defencemen and three or four forwards are expected to be added at the conclusion of round one of the Stanley Cup playoffs.