Draft eligible forward Nail Yakupov has been rules ineligible to play in the next two Sarnia Sting games by the Ontario Hockey League
for failing to participate in the 2012 CHL Top Prospects Game, according to Brendan Ross.
Coming off an injury suffered at the 2012 World Junior Championship in early January, Yakupov opted to not participate in the event at the advice of doctors. Yakupov had played in three games in three nights leading up to the Top Prospects Game, held in Kelowna, BC.
“Dr. R. Giffin of the Fowler Kennedy Clinic in London has advised the hockey club that it is in the best interest of the player not to partake in the Top Prospects game on Wednesday in Kelowna,” Sting general manager Jacques Beaulieu said in a statement before the event.
Canadian Hockey League president David Branch disagreed.
“We believe he could’ve been there,” Branch told the London Free Press. “This is a tremendous event. There were 300 scouts and NHL general managers in attendance and fans who came to see 40 of the best hockey prospects in the world.”
The Quebec Remparts were also fined by the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League after Patrick Roy accused QMJHL commissioner Gilles Courteau of pressuring Mikhail Grigorenko into participating in this week’s top prospects game.