Team USA will begin its round robin play on Thursday against Slovakia, but it will do so without a member of its management team looking on.
General Manager David Poile will not be joining the team in Sochi after he was hit by an errant puck last week during a Nashville Predators' morning skate. After two surgeries on his face, there was hope Poile could make the trip, but during media availability on Monday morning after Team USA's first practice, it was confirmed that the general manager would be staying home.
[Related: U.S. hockey GM can't travel to Sochi]
“He’s back in Nashville getting great care," said Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for the USA. "It’s just not advisable for him to come to Sochi with everything he still has to deal with."
“We’re going to miss David as a friend, more than anything," said head coach Dan Bylsma.
Assistant General Manager Ray Shero, who broke the news to the team on Monday, will handle his duties while in Sochi, but Poile will still be involved in decision-making back home in Nashville.
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"From David's situation, difficult news for me having worked for David for eight years in Nashville and knowing as I told the team today how much passion, time and effort he has putting this team together," Shero said. "We'll keep the seat warm here."
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