CALGARY, AB - The Canadian Hockey Association announced today that Eric Lindros will not participate at the 2001 IIHF World Hockey Championships in Germany.
After discussions today between Lindros and the Canadian Hockey Association, both parties agreed that the upcoming World Championship would not be the best avenue for Erics return to hockey given his concussion history, time he has been away from the game, and the lack of ample preparation time prior to the Worlds.
"Eric is a tremendous player and a player that we would have liked to have on our team in Germany, " said Wayne Gretzky, Executive Director of Canadas Mens World Championship and Mens Olympic team. "We all agreed today that the World Championship would not be an appropriate place for Eric to enter back into the game due to his concussion history and the lack of preparation that would allow him to play at such a high level of competition."
The CHA contacted Lindros representatives last week about the World Hockey Championship. Lindros contacted the CHA this morning after being out of the country for the past ten days.
"We totally support this decision, and we wish him the best in his return to the game next season," said Lanny McDonald, Assistant Executive Director, Canadas Mens World Championship team.
Lindros has represented Canada previously eight times, including winning two World Junior Championships, the 1991 Canada Cup and a silver medal at the 1992 Olympic Winter Games. Lindros hasn't played during the 2000-2001 season since suffering his sixth career concussion last May during a NHL playoff game.
"Eric has represented Canada in the past whenever he has been asked, and is always proud to play for his country," said Bob Nicholson, President, CHA.
"I have cherished the opportunities to represent Canada in the past, " said Eric Lindros. "I had great discussions with Wayne Gretzky on Tuesday night and Bob Nicholson today. I wish the team well at the Worlds the last time I played at the Worlds it was in Germany and I really enjoyed the experience. I look forward to earning a position to represent Canada at the next opportunity, and I believe this decision enhances the likely hood of that."
Canadas first game at the 2001 IIHF World Hockey Championship will take place in Hanover, Germany on April 28 versus Norway.