Sweden and Detroit Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg is out of the Olympics with a back injury.
“In this situation it was no tough decision as this was no borderline case,” Sweden team doctor Bjorn Waldeback said Friday. “For people who know medicine it is obvious that this couldn’t continue.
“[Henrik] has been in touch with the Detroit medical staff. I have been in touch with the NHL doctors who are here. They totally agree with us. When you suffer from a herniated disk the way he does, you need to go home for a medical evaluation.”
Zetterberg has a herniated disk and missed 13 games with the Red Wings. He scored one goal and won seven faceoffs in Sweden’s victory over the Czech Republic. But his back started to hurt and he received treatment on Thursday.
Sweden played against Switzerland on Friday without Zetterberg and they won 1-0. Unfortunately, rules do not allow the country to replace Zetterberg on the roster and his loss could hurt Sweden’s chances at a medal. Their other star Henrik Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks did not make the trip because of a rib injury. Goalie Henrik Lundqvist is the last top star on the team.
“It’s a tough loss for us. It is impossible to replace a guy like Zetterberg. He’s our captain and such a great player all over the ice who makes great decisions,” Sweden goalie Henrik Lundqvist said. “It is a tough break when we heard the news yesterday; it was not a good moment. At the same time you just have stay positive here and other guys have to step up and play a bigger role. It’s definitely a tough break.”
Zetterberg will not rejoin the Red Wings after the Olympics because of the injury and is listed as out indefinitely.