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McKenzie: All sorts of speculation on how to replace Hamonic

Bob McKenzie
1/4/2010 12:27:37 AM
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Team Canada has not said anything official regarding the injury to defeceman Travis Hamonic other than 'upper body until further evaluation,' but we do know for a fact that he has a separated shoulder and will sit Tuesday's gold medal game.

It is a huge loss for the Canadians, as Hamonic is part of the shutdown pairing with Marco Scandella on the blue line and there is no easy way to replace him.

There is all sorts of speculation on how Team Canada might go about replacing Hamonic and I suspect when it's all said and done, we may be looking at a number of different things, almost a hybrid solution.

Some people might say that Canada then has to play Jared Cowen more often but quiet frankly, I don't think the coaching staff has much confidence in Cowen's foot speed mobility, especially against the United States or Sweden. So, I can't see Cowen taking a regular shift in the top six.

Calvin de Haan is coming off a concussion and he didn't see a lot of ice time in Sunday's semifinal contest against Switzerland, so that leaves Canada shorted handed on the backend.

I think we will see Brandon McMillan move back to the blue line. He is a forward from the Kelowna Rockets who played defence for the Rockets when they went to the Memorial Cup and has played a little defence for Canada in this tournament.

The move would mean that Luke Adam would move up, it would mean Adam Henrique would have to play more, and it would possibly mean Stefan Della Rovere would move in with Nazem Kadri and Taylor Hall in the second line.

A lot of permutations, but what it really boils down to is Team Canada could come down to being a five or six man defensive unit and could be a three-line team before Tuesday's game.

Bob McKenzie

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