Top six named for each country in NHL's 4 Nations Face-Off

League: NHL

Posted on: 28 Jun, 2024 at 05:02 PM

Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Matthew Tkachuk and Connor McDavid just finished an epic battle in the Stanley Cup Finals and will be on opposite sides again during the 2025 4 Nations Face-Off, the NHL announced Friday.

The United States, Canada, Sweden and Finland will compete in the tournament scheduled to take place at Montreal and Boston from Feb. 12-20.

Tkachuk of the Stanley Cup champion Florida Panthers was among the first six players announced to represent the United States, along with forwards Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Jack Eichel of the Vegas Golden Knights.

On the blue line for the U.S. will be the New York Rangers' Adam Fox, the Vancouver Canucks' Quinn Hughes, and the Boston Bruins' Charlie McAvoy.

Edmonton Oilers forward McDavid, who won the Conn Smythe Trophy after notching a career-best 100 assists in a 132-point effort this season, will be joined on the Canadian Team by the Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby, a three-time Stanley Cup champion (2009, 2016, 2017). Crosby, 36, led the Penguins with 94 points 42 goals and 52 assists in 82 games.

The Canada roster also includes two members of the Colorado Avalanche: defenseman Cale Makar, forward Nathan MacKinnon. Brad Marchard of the Boston Bruins and Brayden Point of the Tampa Bay Lightning will join them.

Point's teammate from Tampa Bay, nine-time All-Star Victor Hedman, was one of six named to the Sweden team. Hedman, 33, won the Norris Trophy as the league's best defenseman in 2018 and has been a finalist for the honor six times over a 15-year career.

Hedman will be joined on the blue line by Gustav Forsling of the Panthers and Erik Karlsson of the Penguins. Sweden's first six also include forwards Filip Forsberg of the Nashville Predators, William Nylander of the Leafs and Mika Zibanejad of the Rangers.

Yet another member of the Stanley Cup winning team will appear at the 4 Nations Face-Off, with Panthers forward Aleksander Barkov leading Finland's contingent. Barkov notched a second Selke Trophy as the league's best defensive forward in a season that saw him finish with 80 points (23 goals, 57 assists) in 73 games.

Finland also announced the addition of Dallas Stars defensemen Esa Lindell and Miro Heiskanen, and forwards Juuse Saros, Sebastian Aho of the Carolina Hurricanes and another Avs player, Mikko Rantanen.

Each country's roster will consist of 23 players, with the remainder to be named at a later time.

The tournament will replace the NHL All-Star game for the 2025 season and is positioned as a showcase leading up to the 2026 Winter Olympics in Italy.

--Field Level Media