No Jagr — not yet anyway — for the Czech Republic at the World Cup


The Czech Republic became the third country to name the first 16 players of its 2016 World Cup squad, following the announcements earlier today by the Russians and the Finns.

Here’s what the Czechs are starting with:

G Petr Mrazek, Detroit Red Wings
G Michal Neuvirth, Philadelphia Flyers
G Ondrej Pavelec, Winnipeg Jets

D Radko Gudas, Philadelphia Flyers
D Michal Kempny, Avangard Omsk (KHL)
D Roman Polak, San Jose Sharks
D Andrej Sustr, Tampa Bay Lightning

F Michael Frolik, Calgary Flames
F Martin Hanzal, Arizona Coyotes
F Tomas Hertl, San Jose Sharks
F David Krejci, Boston Bruins
F Ondrej Palat, Tampa Bay Lightning
F David Pastrnak, Boston Bruins
F Tomas Plekanec, Montreal Canadiens
F Vladimir Sobotka, Avangard Omsk (KHL)
F Jakub Voracek, Philadelphia Flyers

Jaromir Jagr, you’ll note, is not part of the above group. The 44-year-old retired from international competition after the 2015 World Championship, and he was only participating in that tournament because it was being held in the Czech Republic. He’d previously retired from representing the national team in 2014.

Still, nobody’s counting him out quite yet. If he wants to play, he’ll surely have a spot on the final 23-man roster, which will be announced no later than June 1.

As for the players listed, the big strength of this team could be in goal. Mrazek and Neuvirth have been excellent for the Red Wings and Flyers, respectively, this season. They each boast a .927 save percentage.

The blue line, on the other hand, could be the big weakness, a la Russia.

Remaining options for the Czechs include Jiri Hudler, Radim Vrbata, Ales Hemsky, and Tomas Fleischmann.