After an impressive season with the Capitals, Matt Niskanen has earned himself a spot on the United States' World Cup of Hockey roster, it was announced Friday. Niskanen will join John Carlson and T.J. Oshie who were selected to the American squad in the preliminary roster announced in March.
Niskanen, 29, registered 32 points in the 2015-16 season, his second in Washington, and led the team in time on ice per game with 24:39. The Niskanen-Karl Alzner pairing saw its role expand as the season progressed and took over as the team's top blueline duo as the season progressed.
"I think my overall game and defensively, I made big strides this year based on the amount of minutes I played this year, penalty kill, and playing against top guys," Niskanen said. "My overall game was probably my best season. So that’s positive."
The Virginia, Minn. native is now the eighth Capitals player selected to the World Cup. In addition to Carlson and Oshie, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, and Alex Ovechkin will represent Russia while Nicklas Backstrom and Braden Holtby will play for Sweden and Canada respectively.
The 2016 World Cup of Hockey will be held in Toronto starting on Sept. 17.