Nolan Yonkman won't be jumping off any buildings when he lands in Auckland for next month's Ice Hockey Classic.

After all, he'll be here to check bodies into the boards as he leads Team Canada in the ice hockey showcase series against the United States.

The former NHL defenceman will captain the Canadian squad in the three-match classic fresh of a successful season in Europe. Speaking to Puck Yeah, Yonkman said while he wouldn't be indulging in bungee jumping, he was looking forward to showing Kiwis what ice hockey was all about.

"All the guys are going to want to bring it," Yonkman said. "I've gone twice now and won both cups, so I've got to keep that going."

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Yonkman, 37, played 76 NHL matches across four franchises and will be joined on by current New York Rangers centre Peter Holland.

New York Rangers centre Peter Holland will represent Team Canada in June's Ice Hockey Classic. Photo / Getty Images
New York Rangers centre Peter Holland will represent Team Canada in June's Ice Hockey Classic. Photo / Getty Images

Holland was the 15th pick in the 2009 NHL draft and has played in over 260 NHL matches since his debut in the league in 2011.

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"I think it's going to be good," Yonkman said. "I know guys look at the roster and go 'hey, we don't have the Sidney Crosby's, we don't have the [Connor] McDavid's, we don't have all that kind of stuff' but I think it's still going to be a great representation of what hockey is.

"We're coming to entertain, and we're still professionals. We're still playing against each other – Canada versus USA – and I don't want people to think in any means that this is anything staged.

"We have fun out there, but we're still very competitive."

Nolan Yonkman played for the Florida Panthers in the NHL between 2011 and 2013. Photo / Getty Images.
Nolan Yonkman played for the Florida Panthers in the NHL between 2011 and 2013. Photo / Getty Images.

Yonkman and Holland will be among a handful of player taking to the ice in Auckland, Wellington and Queenstown next month, with Team USA captained by Zenon Konopka, 37, who played more than 300 games in the League.

"A lot of us have seen the NHL and may be a little bit older like myself but we still want to bring that competitive, very entertaining game because our pride's on the line," Yonkman said.

The full rosters were due to be announced over the coming weeks and the Herald understands Columbus Blue Jackets defenceman Ian Cole is expected to suit up for Team USA.

Ice Hockey Classic New Zealand dates:
June 22 – Spark Arena, Auckland
June 23 – Westpac stadium, Wellington
June 28 – Queenstown Ice Arena, Queenstown (Sold out)