Pittsburgh Penguins executive vice-president and general manager Jim Rutherford announced today that defenseman Kris Letang has undergone successful neck surgery for a herniated disc. If that sounds painful, it’s because it is. The recovery process should take him throughout the playoffs and into the offseason, with a expected return to action in 4 to 6 months.
It’s been a tough campaign for the 29-year old native of Montreal, as he’s seen action in only half of his team’s games this season. In just 41 games played, Letang has produced an incredible 34 points in 2016-17. But that’s of little consequence to his team right now, who find themselves in a closely matched opening round playoff series against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Letang and his teammates are both hopeful that he’ll make a full recovery in time for the start of the 2017-18 season, but given the serious nature of his injury there’s no guarantee that the smooth-skating blue liner will be back to his old self. In a career filled with injuries and setbacks however, fans shouldn’t count Letang out just yet. He has a history of overcoming seemingly impossible odds and coming back stronger than ever.