Lightning's Steven Stamkos out of Sochi 2014

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Team Canada's Olympic hopes took a big blow last night after the Tampa Bay Lightning announced that forward Steven Stamkos would not be able to play in the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.

The announcement came following a CT scan on his leg which revealed that his right tibia had not fully healed.

"Today is obviously very disappointing for me," Stamkos said in the release. "I honestly believe that we did everything possible in order to have my injured leg ready in time for the Olympics, but I realize you can't force healing."

The Lightning forward had hoped to take part in the game against Detroit on Saturday night before joining up with the National team, but today's announcement means that that is now not going to happen.

Stamkos first injured his leg in November during a match against the Boston Bruins and even though his recovery process has gone quicker than expected, it just wasn't enough for him to be fit for Sochi.

It will now be another two or three weeks until Stamkos is evaluated again according to the team.

Team Canada now face the decision of who is to replace Stamkos at the competition, Tampa Bay teammate Martin St Louis, Pittsburgh's James Neal, Philadelphia's Claude Giroux or Carolina's Eric Staal are all potential replacements for Stamkos.

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