Just seven players, including captain Ovechkin, have survived from the squad that lost to Finland in the Sochi Olympic quarterfinals. One notable absentee is former New Jersey Devils wing Ilya Kovalchuk, now playing for SKA St. Petersburg, who is injured.
Among NHL players, only those whose teams have been eliminated from the playoffs were eligible for the squad, which was announced Tuesday by the Russian Hockey Federation. Players can be added later, however.
The worlds are the first major competition for new Russia coach Oleg Znarok. He has been tasked with reviving the team after it failed to win a medal at Sochi. Russia is to play Switzerland, Finland, the United States, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Germany and Belarus in the group stage.
The squad includes 26 names, one more than the maximum allowed by the International Ice Hockey Federation for the championship. Of the 26, eight play in the NHL, with the remaining 16 drawn from the Kontinental Hockey League. That included defenseman Anton Belov, who left the Edmonton Oilers for SKA.