With the women threatening a boycott of the tournament over a
wage dispute, the team said in statement on Thursday that USA
Hockey was contacting other players to replace them.
"The players are aware that USA Hockey is attempting to secure a
team to play in the world championship, in case the players and
USA Hockey are unable to reach agreement," it said.
"As we have maintained from the beginning, this issue is about
more than the compensation of the current team: it's about
equitable treatment for female players now and in the future.
"A forward-looking agreement will benefit the next generation of
players even more than the current players. For that reason, and
the fact that the younger players identify with us, we are
confident that they would choose not to play."
Earlier this week, the two sides said they had held productive
talks and would continue discussions this week in the hope of
reaching a deal.
"We ask that they (USA Hockey) approve the original agreement
that, the players believed, was acceptable to both parties after
Monday's meeting," the statement added.
"Unless there is an agreement, the players remain resolved to
bypass the defense of the world championship."
The tournament begins next Friday in Plymouth, Michigan.
(Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina)
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