Flames won’t release Monahan for World Juniors

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There was some thought that, following yesterday’s Team Canada World Junior roster announcement, Calgary would release rookie Sean Monahan for this year’s tourney.

On Tuesday, the Flames shot it down.

“The Calgary Flames Hockey Club will not be assigning Sean Monahan to join Team Canada for the upcoming World Junior Championships in Malmo, Sweden,” GM Jay Feaster said in a statement. “We have spent a great deal of time discussing and debating the pros and cons of the situation in the context of what is best for Sean’s continued professional development as a hockey player, as well as what is in the best interests of our team, our fans, and our organization.

“We have concluded that in light of the prominent role Sean has played on our team to date, and the role we project he will continue to play once he returns from his injury, that Sean will remain with our hockey club.”

Monahan, 19, is currently on injured reserve with a fractured foot. Speculation suggested that Calgary would let him participate in the tourney after the injury healed (he’s listed as week-to-week), which would’ve made Monahan just one of two current NHLers on Team Canada — the other being Minnesota defenseman Mathew Dumba.

But that speculation proved false.

The sixth overall pick at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Monahan has been one of Calgary’s best players this season, sitting second in the team in goals (nine) and points (15) at the time of his injury. The former OHL Ottawa standout was averaging over 16 minutes per game and sits fifth among all rookies in scoring.

Related: Wilson ‘means too much’ to Caps, not allowed to play at World Juniors