SOCHI, Russia -- Team USA General Manager David Poile will not travel to Russia for the Olympic hockey tournament because of injuries he suffered last week when he was hit in the face by an errant puck in a freak accident.
Poile underwent surgery to repair facial injuries shortly after the incident in St. Paul, Minn. Team USA officials said Monday that he has since returned to Nashville -- where he is general manager of the Predators -- and has been advised not to make the long trip to Sochi.
Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey, made the announcement after the American team practiced at the Bolshoy Dome.
“We’re in very good and constant communication with David the past three days and certainly today,” Johannson said. “He’s our general manager. It’s just unfortunate that he can’t join us in Sochi.
“One of the things USA Hockey is proud of is how we’ve built this management group to assist our national teams at all levels and this just shows the strength we have as a group. We’re going to miss David as a friend, probably more than anything. But we’re going to miss a guy that’s been so dedicated to our programs. ...
“We’ll be carrying a big part of him with us all week."