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McNeill added to Canadian roster for WJC; Hudon out

by Mike G. Morreale

Hockey Canada announced on Friday that forward Mark McNeill of the Prince Albert Raiders in the Western Hockey League will join the Canadian National Junior Team in Finland on Saturday as an injury replacement.

McNeill will replace Charles Hudon of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Chicoutimi Saguenéens. Hudon, who reportedly is suffering from a back injury, will return to Canada on Sunday.

McNeill was one of the eight final players cut from Canada's selection camp in Calgary earlier this month. The Edmonton native has represented Canada at the 2011 Under-18 World Championship in Germany and also played for Team Pacific at the 2010 U-17 World Hockey Challenge in Timmins, Ontario. McNeill was selected in the first round (No. 18) by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2011 NHL Draft.

McNeill leads Prince Albert in scoring with 13 goals and 26 assists for 39 points in 35 games. The team captain has three game-winning goals and has five points in six games in December.

Canada will play a final pre-competition game on Saturday against Sweden in Helsinki at 9 a.m. ET. The Canadians dropped a 3-2 exhibition game to Finland on Thursday.

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