Canada and Finland are set for what should be an incredibly entertaining contest between two great teams, but the Finns may not have their No. 1 center in the lineup for the contest. Aleksander Barkov was forced to leave Finland’s game against Norway on Friday during the third period and he did not return.
— Antti Mäkinen (@sirmakinen) February 14, 2014
It’s being reported that the teenage Florida Panthers star injured his knee, and it’s unclear at this juncture whether or not he’ll be able to lace up the skates for the Finns. We’ve already seen Henrik Zetterberg knocked out of action for Sweden and their offense hasn’t quite looked the same.
Will the Finns be able to come up with the center depth necessary to compete with a like Canada without Barkov?
Remember, Finland is already without Mikko Koivu, Saku Koivu and Valtteri Filppula—all three are centers. Losing their top pivot might be too much for Finland to overcome, but sometimes outstanding performances are born because of tough trials.
Of course, it’s still not known at this point whether or not Barkov will be able to play. We’ll keep you updated with any new information as it becomes available.
Barkov is reportedly done for the tournament.
Finnish hockey federation confirms Barkov out of the tournament.
— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) February 15, 2014
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