Dallas Stars: Five Players To Compete In World Cup Of Hockey

Apr 18, 2016; Saint Paul, MN, USA; Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn (14) in the second period against the Minnesota Wild in game three of the first round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 18, 2016; Saint Paul, MN, USA; Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn (14) in the second period against the Minnesota Wild in game three of the first round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports /

The 2016 World Cup of Hockey is set to begin on September 17 and five members of the Dallas Stars will be in the tournament.

Founded in 1996, the World Cup of Hockey is a tournament organized by the NHL. With the last two taking place in 1996 and 2004, the tournament is set to occur every four years from here on out.

In the two weeks that the event is live, six national teams (USA, Canada, Russia, Finland, Sweden Czech Republic) and two All-Star teams (North America, Europe) will compete against each other. The North American team is made up of players 23-and-under while the European team is made up of European players not selected to national teams.

The NHL recently released the final rosters for each team, and five players from the Stars will get to represent their country in the tournament.

Jamie Benn – Team Canada: In his third year as the Stars’ Captain, Benn set a career-high in points with 87 (41 goals, 48 assists). He went on to add in another 15 points in the playoffs by logging five goals and 10 assists. He was one of just five players that played every game for the team in 2015-16.

His passion for the game, determination in clutch moments and overall complete play earned him nominations for both the Ted Lindsay Award and the Hart Memorial Trophy.

Benn has had the opportunity to be a major piece with Team Canada before, but at an even higher level. In the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, he scored the lone goal against Team USA that sent Canada to the gold medal game. There’s no doubt he’ll play a major role in Canada’s World Cup performance.

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Tyler Seguin – Team Canada: Benn’s fellow linemate was also selected for Team Canada. Last season, Seguin was on the verge of passing his points total from 2014-15 (77 points) before he was injured again. His cut Achilles held him to 33 goals and 40 assists in 2015-16.

Seguin went on to miss every playoff game except for Game 2 against the Minnesota Wild, where he was on the ice for 15:40, registering one shot on goal. In that game, he suffered a strained calf and was sidelined for the rest of the playoffs.

His time in the World Cup of Hockey will serve as his first in-game action since Apr. 16.

Radek Faksa – Team Czech Republic: Serving as one of the teams youngest talents, Faksa broke out in 2015-16. After being drafted in 2012, he made his NHL debut on Oct. 17 and scored his first goal a little less than a month later. Faksa ended the regular season with12 points in the regular season (5 goals, 7 assists).

In the playoffs, he really began to shine, scoring three goals and adding in two helpers. He had key tallies in Games 1 and 4 that helped the Stars secure wins and he proved his role of a two-way forward, creating plays on offense and getting time on the penalty kill.

At age 22, Faksa is just getting started in the NHL and I’m sure he’ll be with the Stars for quite some time. Getting some experience at the national level will help his game develop even more.

Ales Hemsky – Team Czech Republic: Hemksy, who was signed by the Stars in the summer of 2014, will join Faksa on Team Czech Republic. In 2015-16, he recorded 13 goals and 26 assists as he got hot towards the end of the regular season. Some of Hemsky’s best weapons are his hands, and we saw more of his stunning dangles this past season.

He was able to see his first playoff action since his time with the Edmonton Oilers in 2005-06 as he shared a line with Faksa and Antoine Roussel, one of the team’s best lines in the postseason. Hemsky went on to score a key goal in Game 4 against the Wild while adding in three assists throughout the playoffs.

Esa Lindell – Team Finland: As one of the Stars’ brightest prospects, the 22-year old Lindell is set to get a head start on next season at the World Cup of Hockey, and I say that because he’ll be playing against most of the same players once next season rolls around.

Lindell is NHL-ready and with four Stars’ defensemen set to hit free agency, it’s almost a certainty that he’ll be on the roster on opening night. Last season, Lindell played four games with the Stars from Jan. 19 to Jan. 25, so he’s already played his first game in the NHL. Next season, we’ll likely see him score his first goal in the NHL.

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Whether you are a fan of a national team or simply a fan of Stars hockey, you’ll definitely enjoy the World Cup of Hockey later on this year. Getting to see players like Benn and Seguin in action before the NHL preseason starts is something no hockey fan will want to miss .

You can view the full rosters for the tournament here.