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Martinsen on Team Norway for World Championship

by Ron Knabenbauer / Colorado Avalanche

Colorado Avalanche forward Andreas Martinsen will be one of two NHL players on Norway's squad for the 2016 IIHF World Championship.

Martinsen and Mats Zuccarello of the New York Rangers were among the players named to the national team by the Norwegian Ice Hockey Association on Sunday night. This will mark the seventh consecutive season that Martinsen has represented Norway at the World Championship. He has recorded four points (one goal and three assists) in 39 career games at the annual tournament.

The 25-year-old has also competed for his home country at the 2009 and 2010 Division-1 World Junior Championship and at the 2007 and 2008 Division-1 Under-18 World Championship.

Signed by the Avalanche as a free agent on May 15 of last year, Martinsen completed his first season in North America with 11 points (four goals and seven assists) in 55 games with Colorado. He began the year with the Avs' American Hockey League affiliate in San Antonio before being recalled on Nov. 8. Martinsen appeared in 10 games with the Rampage, recording two points (a goal and an assist).

The Baerum, Norway, native made his Avalanche debut on Nov. 10 at Philadelphia, becoming the eighth Norwegian-born player in NHL history and the third for Colorado (Jonas Holos, Anders Myrvold). He registered his first career point with an assist on Nov. 14 at Montreal and was the fifth Norwegian-born player to score an NHL goal when he tallied his first on Nov. 21 at Washington.

Prior to joining the Avs, Martinsen had played professionally in Europe for parts of nine seasons, most recently with Dusseldorfer in Germany from 2012 to 2015.

Martinsen joins Reto Berra (Switzerland), JT Compher (United States), Matt Duchene (Canada), Anton Lindholm (Sweden), Calvin Pickard (Canada), Mikko Rantanen (Finland) and Semyon Varlamov (Russia) as members of the Avalanche organization to play at this year's tournament.

The World Championship begins this Friday and runs to May 22 in Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia. Norway opens preliminary-round play on Saturday against Denmark in Moscow.

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