Devils vs. Hurricanes
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.


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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - NYR 73 47 19 7 224 168 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 75 46 22 7 244 194 99
4 NYI 75 44 26 5 228 208 93
5 PIT 74 40 23 11 204 186 91
6 DET 73 39 22 12 212 201 90
7 WSH 74 40 24 10 215 182 90
8 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
9 BOS 74 36 25 13 195 193 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 CBJ 74 35 35 4 203 230 74
13 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 68 20 27 -13 47
J. Faulk 73 14 32 -18 46
E. Lindholm 72 16 20 -21 36
J. Skinner 68 18 12 -22 30
V. Rask 71 11 19 -12 30
R. Nash 67 8 17 -10 25
N. Gerbe 69 7 17 -13 24
J. McClement 73 7 13 -3 20
A. Nestrasil 45 7 13 4 20
J. Staal 37 4 15 -9 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 19 21 5 .910 2.43
A. Khudobin 8 15 5 .903 2.62