SOCHI, Russia  U.S. men's hockey general manager David Poile was released Sunday from a St. Paul hospital and returned to Nashville but he will not travel to Russia for the Olympics, according to Team USA.

Poile last week was struck in the face by an errant puck at XcelEnergyCenter, suffering a serious eye injury that required surgery and about 40 stitches.

The longtime Predators GM was able to fly back home but doctors advised him not to travel overseas to watch the team he hand picked compete in the world's most prestigious hockey tournament.

Acting in Poile's place will be his assistant, Ray Shero, general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins, said Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey.

“We're going to miss David as a friend, probably more than anything, but we're (also) going to miss a guy that's been so dedicated to our program,” Johansson said Monday after Team USA's first practice in Sochi.

“We'll be carrying a big part of him with us all week.”

Poile was injured standing in the hallway behind the visitor's bench during the morning skate before Minnesota's 3-2 victory over the Predators. Shero and Johannson communicated with Poile during his three-day stay at RegionsHospital, and they plan to keep their injured colleague in the loop on roster decisions as the tournament progresses.


“Huge disappointment knowing the work, knowing the time and effort he's put in,” said head coach Dan Bylsma. “Having said that, while he's not going to be joining us here, he's still going to be the GM of the team.”

Poile started scouting for Team USA last summer, recruiting 48 players for a training camp in late August outside WashingtonD.C. He finalized the 25-man roster Jan. 1.

Team USA plays Slovakia Thursday, Russia Saturday and Slovenia on Sunday before the teams are reseeded for the single-elimination medal round.