It doesn’t look like Brandon Sutter will be playing for the Canucks again this season.
The Canucks announced today the forward will undergo surgery to address a sports hernia on his right side. His expected recovery timeline is 6-8 weeks. A similar procedure on his left side was carried out in 2015.
Update on Brandon Sutter, whose expected recovery timeline is 6-8 weeks. https://t.co/mEEn5F3GXT
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) March 5, 2019
The 30-year-old centre has been limited to just 26 games this season due to a separated shoulder and now a sports hernia injury. He’s managed four goals and six points while averaging 17:28 of ice time in those appearances.
The Canucks seemingly wanted to see if Sutter would be able to recover fully without going under the knife, but it appears as though he hasn’t made enough progress in his recovery over the past few weeks for that to be a possibility.
The 30-year-old was coming off a solid 2017-18 season in which he managed 11 goals, 26 points and a plus-8 rating in 61 games. It’s unfortunate to see him have another year derailed by injuries. Sutter only played 20 games in his debut season (2015-16) for the Canucks due to the sports hernia injury on his left side.
Sutter hasn’t played for the Canucks since Feb.9 after he suffered a lower-body injury in a game against the Calgary Flames. He missed 30 games earlier in the year when he suffered a right-shoulder sprain on Oct. 29 against the Minnesota Wild.
It’s still possible we see Sutter this season if the Canucks get it into the playoffs and go on a run, but it’s unlikely. The team is currently eight points back of the last playoff spot in the Western Conference with 16 games remaining.
There wasn’t much interest in the centre at the trade deadline because of his injury and the fact he had a no-trade clause. The clause reverts to a modified no-trade in the final two years of his contract, carrying a $4,375,000 AAV. Starting 2019-20, Sutter can submit a list of 15 teams he cannot be traded to.
The Canucks will likely look to move the two-way centre this summer with Bo Horvat, Elias Pettersson, Adam Gaudette and Jay Beagle providing solid depth at that position.