Detroit Red Wings defenseman Derian Hatcher has withdrawn from the United States’ entry in the World Cup of Hockey. Hatcher’s agent, Pat Morris, said that the tough blueliner was worried about jumping into a high level of competition so quickly after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament last season.
“I think he’s concerned about the knee,” Team USA general manager Larry Pleau said. “I don’t think there’s any long-term concern at all. I think it’s just the short term.”
Hatcher is the fourth Red Wing to pull out of the tournament. He joins Steve Yzerman and Robert Lang, who withdrew from the Canadian and Czech squads, respectively, due to injuries. Mathieu Schneider quit the American team due to insurance worries.
“We were counting on both guys,” U.S. defenseman Chris Chelios said of Hatcher and Schneider. “That hurts. But we’ve got some young kids here that are going to get some experience.”