Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jiri Fischer was named to the Czech Republic team for the upcoming World Cup of Hockey, replacing injured Tampa Bay Lightning blueliner Pavel Kubina.
Kubina was injured during the Stanley Cup Finals as his Lightning defeated the Calgary Flames in a seven-game series. Fischer’s last game of the season was also against Calgary, in Game Five of the second-round matchup that saw the Flames eliminate the Red Wings in six games.
Fischer was a healthy scratch in Game Six of that series, having struggled throughout the season after returning from a torn anterior-cruciate ligament the season before.
Fischer was a key member of the Red Wings’ 2002 Stanley Cup Champtionship team, playing the best season of his young career alongside the veteran Chris Chelios, who will play for Team USA in the tournament.
Other Red Wings representing their respective countries at the World Cup include Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby for Canada, Derian Hatcher and Chelios for the United States, Nicklas Lidstrom, Tomas Holmstrom and Henrik Zetterberg for Sweden, and Pavel Datsyuk for Russia. Steve Yzerman and Robert Lang were forced to withdraw from the Canadian and Czech rosters, respectively, due to injuries.
Former Red Wing Brett Hull, who signed with the Phoenix Coyotes this summer, will play for the United States. Red Wings unrestricted free agent Mathieu Schneider has withdrawn from the tournament for insurance reasons, as he has yet to sign with an NHL team.