Center Nolan Patrick of Brandon of the Western Hockey League, projected to be the first player picked at the 2017 NHL Draft, will not play for Canada at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship, Hockey Canada announced Monday.
Patrick, 18, has not played since Oct. 11 because of an upper-body injury, and he was not medically cleared to attend Canada's World Junior selection camp, which will be held Dec. 11-14 at Centre d'Excellence Sports Rousseau in Blainville, Quebec.
Hockey Canada head scout Ryan Jankowski said Patrick needed to take part in the camp, including playing exhibition games against U Sports (formerly CIS) all-stars on Dec. 12 and Dec. 13, and a game against the Czech Republic on Dec. 14, to earn a spot with Canada for the WJC.
"For us and what we're trying to accomplish this year and everything being earned, yes, he'd have to participate in the games in the 12th, 13th and 14th," Jankowski said on Nov. 29, when the roster for the camp was unveiled.
Patrick had sports hernia surgery in July and returned to start the season with Brandon but played six games before leaving the lineup.
Hockey Canada named Patrick to its 32-player roster for the World Junior selection camp with the hope that he'd be available.
Patrick, a 6-foot-3, 198-pound center, had 41 goals and 102 points in 72 games with Brandon last season, and was the most valuable player of the WHL playoffs after leading the league with 30 points in 21 games.
Hockey Canada said it would not name a replacement player for the camp.
The 2017 WJC will be held Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2017. Canada will be in Group B, along with Latvia, Russia, Slovakia and the United States, and will play its preliminary-round games at Air Canada Centre in Toronto.