Early in the morning hours on the West Coast, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet tweeted out an ominous report on Jeff Carter of the Los Angeles Kings.
Some question about Jeff Carter’s status for upcoming World Cup. Players report on Sunday, clarity should come by then
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) September 2, 2016
LA Kings Insider, Jon Rosen, followed it up with a brief column:
Based on correspondence, Carter suffered a lower-body injury while training. I have a preliminary sense that this isn’t a major injury – one source told LA Kings Insider the injury is “week-to-week” – though in all likelihood he won’t be able to participate at the upcoming World Cup of Hockey … on Team Canada. Carter, who had been skating with teammates and other Los Angeles-based players at Toyota Sports Center recently, was scheduled to travel to Ottawa late this week to take part in Canada’s training camp, which opens with on-ice sessions Monday at Canadian Tire Centre. It’s expected, as Elliotte Friedman noted, that this should be addressed when players report on Sunday; expect some sort of a release at or before that time.
Rosen was pretty much correct.
A release came out hours later stating that Carter would miss the World Cup due to a lower body injury, and he’d be replaced by Anaheim Ducks right winger, and all around pain in the butt, Corey Perry.
What does this mean for Team Canada? Well, not much in the grand scheme of things.
Think of Team Canada as The Avengers. They lose Hawkeye and replace him with someone equally as talented but still not necessary to the team’s overall success. That’s what we’ve got here.
Last season, Carter played in 77 games with 24 goals and 62 points. By comparison, Perry played in all 82 games with 34 goals, and like Carter, 62 points.
The funny thing about Perry being added to the team this late in the process is that he appeared at the beginning to be one of the few who actually wanted to go to the World Cup.
He wasn’t named to the initial roster, and when the Ducks were bounced out of the first round of the playoffs, he played for Team Canada at the World Championships in Russia. He saw that as his best opportunity to make the final World Cup roster.
“It’s still April, and it’s a long summer if I don’t go [to Worlds],” said Perry in his April exit interview. “There’s spots still available on that World Cup team, and if can I go over there and I can prove myself that I deserve a spot on that team, that’s what I want to do.”
As captain of Team Canada, Perry helped lead the team to the gold medal in Russia. At that point, he became only the eight member of the ‘Triple Gold Club’ with two Olympic gold medals, one World Championship gold medal, and a Stanley Cup.
That still wasn’t enough to make it to the final slots on the World Cup roster, though. Nor did he seem to be on the team’s short list for replacements to injured players until Carter went down.
Perry will be reunited with his Ducks bestie, Ryan Getzlaf, who was named to the team in the first roster release. They’ll likely end up seeing a lot of ice time together. All they need to find is that illusive left winger that can play with them.
But, again, this is Team Canada. They’re probably going to be just fine.