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Giroux to skip Canadian Olympic orientation session

Flyers captain Claude Giroux will focus efforts on rehabbing hand injured while he was playing golf earlier this month.

Claude Giroux. (Chris O'Meara/AP file)
Claude Giroux. (Chris O'Meara/AP file)Read more

CLAUDE GIROUX will not participate in Canada's Olympic hockey orientation camp next week in Calgary, choosing instead to continue rehabbing his surgically repaired hand.

Giroux was one of 47 players invited by Hockey Canada to join the camp. The players will not take part in any on-ice activities anyway, because of high insurance costs against injury. It is estimated that Hockey Canada would have needed to spend more than $1 million in insurance for the 3-day camp to protect the 47 players, who have contracts with their NHL clubs totaling more than $259 million.

Instead, Canada's orientation camp will be mostly informational meetings ahead of February's trip to Sochi, Russia, and off-ice team activities. Giroux was the Flyers' only invitee to Team Canada's camp. Steve Yzerman's roster needs to be pared down from 25 forwards to approximately 14. Teams may take 22 skaters and three goaltenders to Sochi.

Yzerman will make his selections, along with coach Mike Babcock, based on player performance through the first 25 games of the NHL's regular season. Former Flyers Mike Richards and Chris Pronger helped Canada capture gold at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

Giroux, 25, is entering his second season as the Flyers' captain. While Giroux was golfing on Aug. 15, his club shattered on the follow-through and tore four tendons near his right index finger, requiring emergency surgery in his offseason home of Ottawa.

The Flyers said Giroux would need 5 to 6 weeks for full recovery, which would still allow him to play in a preseason game or two. But Giroux predicted he would be back in 2 to 3 weeks. The Flyers signed Giroux to a max-term, 8-year, $66.2 million contract extension on July 4.

The Flyers open training camp on Sept. 12 at the Wells Fargo Center. Their first preseason game is Sept. 15 in London, Ontario.

Team USA will also hold its Olympic orientation camp on Monday and Tuesday in Washington. No Flyers were invited to participate, but coach Peter Laviolette is one of the assistants on Dan Bylsma's staff. Laviolette was Team USA's head coach at the 2006 Olympics in Turin, Italy.

Giroux is one of the Flyers' five Olympic hopefuls for Sochi, including Finland's Kimmo Timonen, Sweden's Nick Grossmann, Switzerland's Mark Streit and Slovakia's Andrej Meszaros.