Tracking the Storm

Ruutu to Undergo Season-Ending Surgery

Wednesday, 03.24.2010 / 1:33 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Ruutu to Undergo Season-Ending Surgery
The Hurricanes will be down one more key player for the final weeks of the season, as Tuomo Ruutu is set to undergo shoulder surgery on Thursday.

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The procedure will correct a problem that Ruutu has dealt with for much of the season’s second half, having originally left the lineup on January 8 against Colorado. Although he returned the ice one month later, coach Paul Maurice said that the player has not felt 100 percent.

”He’s been dealing with this since he’s come off rehab, and it’s come to the point where he just can’t play the game that he needs to play,” said Maurice.

Ruutu injury comes at a time when Tim Gleason and Alex Picard are questionable to return in the final nine games of the year. Cam Ward has a much better chance, and could return as soon as next week.

Despite the injury, Ruutu had still been effective in recent weeks. Maurice praised the player’s physical style in recent games against Phoenix and Boston, but went on to say that he noticed a drop-off in the four subsequent contests.

”Give him all the credit because he’s played in some pain and played his game in some pain,” said Maurice. “He was very, very physical for as long as he could be, but he just can’t do it anymore.”

Ruutu’s recovery window has not yet been released, although Maurice noted that the rehab period will be “extensive.”

Maurice said the team’s position in the playoff hunt, which has been set back by a loss to Buffalo and an overtime loss to Tampa Bay in the last two games, was not a factor in the timing of the procedure.

“It had nothing to do with that,” he said. “If he was able to compete like he did against Phoenix and Boston and continue that, he’d still be playing. He’s just not capable of doing that and I don’t think anybody would be.”

The Hurricanes are expected to recall a yet-to-be-determined player from Albany to take Ruutu’s place. If lines from Wednesday’s practice are any indication, that player would likely play left wing with Patrick Dwyer and Jussi Jokinen.

Candidates to join the team for Thursday’s home game against Washington include Drayson Bowman, Oskar Osala and Jerome Samson. For those wondering why the promising Jiri Tlusty has not been in the recall mix, he only recently returned from a month-long spell on the sidelines due to an undisclosed injury.


SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 77 23 31 -13 54
J. Faulk 82 15 34 -19 49
E. Lindholm 81 17 22 -23 39
V. Rask 80 11 22 -14 33
J. Skinner 77 18 13 -24 31
N. Gerbe 78 10 18 -14 28
R. Nash 68 8 17 -10 25
J. Staal 46 6 18 -6 24
J. Liles 57 2 20 -9 22
J. McClement 82 7 14 -7 21
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 22 24 5 .910 2.40
A. Khudobin 8 17 6 .900 2.72