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U.S. forward Compher sustains hand injury

by Adam Kimelman /

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- United States forward J.T. Compher, a Buffalo Sabres prospect, sustained an injury to his left hand during a 7-1 win against Sweden on Wednesday and is doubtful to return to the ice for the duration of this week's national junior evaluation camp.

Compher was hurt blocking a shot during a late 5-on-3 penalty kill. His left hand and thumb were heavily wrapped when he arrived at the rink for the United States' game Thursday against Finland.

USA Hockey would not reveal the full nature of the injury.

"We got him looked at and we'll leave it at that for now," Jim Johansson, the assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey and the general manager of the United States for 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship, told

Compher had two assists in the win against Sweden, and in three games at the camp he has three points.

It's the second straight season Compher has sustained an injury during a World Junior camp. In Dec. 2013, at the final U.S. tryout camp prior to the 2014 WJC, he hurt his foot blocking a shot and was unable to play in the tournament.

While Compher's continued on-ice participation here is unlikely, Johansson said Compher will remain with the team. The 19-year-old forward has taken on a leadership role and is a frontrunner to be the captain of the 2015 WJC team.

"I think that was an expectation coming in for him," Johansson said. "It's something he embraces. He's got a pretty long history with a lot of guys in that room being a leader on and off the ice. It's important for him to be here."


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