Say what you will about Colorado Avalanche forward Matt Duchene. In light of recent events, however, you simply cannot say he isn’t tough.

Having just returned from winning the World Cup of Hockey as a member of Team Canada, Duchene played on the international stage. As it turns out, he also played hurt. During the tournament, he was playing with a separated shoulder.

“It was the last drill in practice the day before the Russia game,” Duchene told ESPN. “We were just doing a 2-on-2 battle drill. I barely got bumped… And just the way I went in, my shoulder pad slid, I think. And I hit my AC joint right on the divider in the glass. Immediately I felt a shock of pain.”

The separation was only a Grade 1. Still, there was some thought Duchene’s tournament may be over. Once Duchene found out he couldn’t do any more damage, he quickly let the team doctor know bowing out was out of the question.

“I said to him, ‘As long as this thing won’t get worse, and I can’t hurt it any more, there’s no way you guys are sending me home. I’ll do whatever it takes to be able to play. Whatever we need to do. I know I can fight through it. I worked too hard to be here.’”

Now, Duchene is back in the Mile High City preparing for the upcoming NHL season. Since the Avalanche’s last campaign ended, he has won a World Championship and the World Cup. Hopefully his international success will carry over. If so, the Avalanche could be destined for big things this season.