Plymouth Whalers veteran Stefan Noesen hoped to play for Team USA in the upcoming 2013 World Junior Championships in Ufa, Russia.
Instead, Noesen will spend the Christmas holidays at home in Plano, TX, after the International Ice Hockey Federation upheld Noesen's current ten-game suspension and has ruled him ineligible for the 2013 World Junior Championships, going from Dec. 26-Jan.5.
Noesen was suspended by the Ontario Hockey League for a hit on Dec. 8 against Oshawa and did not play in the Whalers' recent road trip in Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury and Barrie.
“While we respect the IIHF’s decision, we don’t feel the process is equitable,” said Dave Ogrean, executive director of USA Hockey, in a release. “Moving forward, we’ll work with the IIHF and other federations to address the situation.”
Noesen is eligible to return to the Whalers on Jan. 11 against Brampton.
Last season, the IIHF upheld a 20-game suspension assessed to Niagara IceDogs' forward Tomas Kuhnhackl and Kuhnhackl did not play for Germany in the 2012 World Junior Championships.
MORE COVERAGE - Chris Peters of The United States of Hockey has more about the Noesen suspension and how it may affect Team USA. NHL.com also has a story.
Meanwhile, the Whalers are off for the Christmas Holidays and return to action Dec. 27 at 2 pm, hosting Saginaw and Dec. 29 at 7:05 p.m., hosting London.