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New York Islanders John Tavares celebrates his overtime winning goal with against the Toronto Maple Leafs during their NHL hockey game in Toronto, October 18, 2010. (c)
New York Islanders John Tavares celebrates his overtime winning goal with against the Toronto Maple Leafs during their NHL hockey game in Toronto, October 18, 2010. (c)

Tavares, Eberle, join Canada for hockey worlds Add to ...

The core of the Canadian team is pretty much intact for the IIHF World Hockey Championship.

John Tavares, Jordan Eberle and Travis Zajac have all committed to travelling to Slovakia, bringing the number of forwards to 11. Five defenceman and goaltenders James Reimer and Devan Dubnyk have also signed up.

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While that leaves GM Dave Nonis with a few open roster spots, they likely won't be filled until NHL teams start being eliminated from the playoffs.

The Canadian team is scheduled to travel to Paris next week for a training camp and will play its first exhibition game against France on April 24.

It opens the tournament in Kosice, Slovakia against Belarus on April 29.

Tavares received permission from the New York Islanders to attend the event Tuesday. The second-year forward had 29 goals and 67 points in 79 games this season.

The 20-year-old was tops on last year's world championship team with seven goals.

Eberle, fresh off his rookie season with Edmonton, was also a member of last year's Canadian team. He had 18 goals and 43 points in 69 games for the Oilers.

Zajac appeared in all 82 games with the New Jersey Devils this season and had 13 goals and 44 points.

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A look at the players committed to playing for Canada at the IIHF World Hockey Championship:

Forwards: Cal Clutterbuck, Minnesota Wild; Matt Duchene, Colorado Avalanche; Jordan Eberle, Edmonton Oilers; Evander Kane, Atlanta Thrashers; Andrew Ladd, Atlanta Thrashers; Rick Nash, Columbus Blue Jackets; Jason Spezza, Ottawa Senators; Jeff Skinner, Carolina Hurricanes; Chris Stewart, St. Louis Blues; John Tavares, N.Y. Islanders; Travis Zajac, New Jersey Devils.

Defencemen: Brent Burns, Minnesota Wild; Marc Methot, Columbus Blue Jackets; Dion Phaneuf, Toronto Maple Leafs; Alex Pietrangelo, St. Louis Blues; Luke Schenn, Toronto Maple Leafs.

Goalies: Devan Dubnyk, Edmonton Oilers; James Reimer, Toronto Maple Leafs.

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