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Pittsburgh Penguins' Kris Letang to undergo neck surgery, will miss 2017 NHL playoffs

By
The Sports Xchange
Pittsburgh Penguins' Kris Letang waits for play to resume in the third period of a game. File photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
Pittsburgh Penguins' Kris Letang waits for play to resume in the third period of a game. File photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang will undergo surgery for a herniated disc in his neck, the team announced Wednesday.

Letang, 29, will miss the remainder of the regular season and the playoffs, with an expected recovery time of four to six months.

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"Kris underwent an MRI in February that revealed a herniated disc in his neck," Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford said in a statement. "Our neurosurgeons examined him and recommended conservative treatment in an attempt to correct the condition without surgery. Kris had been making progress and was hopeful of returning for the playoffs until about a week ago, when the progress plateaued. He underwent another MRI, and, at that point it was determined that surgery was needed."

Letang has not played since Feb. 21, missing the Penguins' last 20 games. The native of Montreal contributed 34 points (five goals, 29 assists) in 41 games this season.

In 11 NHL seasons, all with the Penguins, Letang owns 386 points (87 goals, 299 assists) in 603 games. Last season he set personal highs with 16 goals, 51 assists and 67 points while earning NHL second-team NHL All-Star honors as the Penguins won the Stanley Cup.

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Letang is a two-time Stanley Cup champion and also was an NHL second team All-Star in 2013. He played in the NHL All-Star Game in 2011, 2012 and 2016.

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