EDMONTON - Heart doesn't help when you're dealing with broken bones.
When Canada's Devante Smith-Pelly blocked a shot with his foot in the second period of Canada's 8-1 win over Finland on Boxing Day, fellow NHLer Brett Connolly of the Tampa Bay Lightning was confident he'd be OK even if the Anaheim Duck was seen leaving the building on crutches.
“Nobody is worried about Devo. He has a lot of heart.”
About four hours after the game, Hockey Canada announced the Scarborough, Ont., product was out for the tournament.
It was revealed the player, who was arguably Canada's best, and certainly the most physical, in the three pre-tournament games, suffered a broken bone in his left foot.
Smith-Pelly, who like Connolly, was loaned to the Canadian team at the world junior just prior to selection camp in Calgary, is expected to remain with the team for the remainder of the tournament.
IIHF rules prohibit Canada from replacing injured players (other than goaltenders) during the tournament.
With a 22-man roster, Canada chose to pick a 13th forward and Tanner Pearce, the OHL scoring leader who twice went through the NHL Entry Draft without being selected, was the last player picked to the team.
Pearce will now get a regular full-time shift on one of the lines, quite likely with Barrie Colts teammate Mark Scheifele, the first round, 7th overall draft pick of the Winnipeg Jets.
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