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Canes’ Pitkanen leaves game with lower-body injury

Feb 12, 2013, 9:11 PM EST

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Even on a significantly altered Carolina Hurricanes team, Joni Pitkanen is still an extremely important player. The team can’t be pleased to find out that he won’t return in Tuesday’s game against the New Jersey Devils after suffering a lower-body injury, according to The Bergen Record’s Tom Gulitti.

The Raleigh News & Observer’s Chip Alexander gets a slight bit more specific, stating that Pitkanen grabbed his leg before leaving the ice.

The 29-year-old defenseman easily leads the Hurricanes in time on ice this season with 25:22 minutes per game. The only player reasonably close is Justin Faulk, 20, who logs a little more than 23 minutes on average.

The Finnish blueliner has five points and a +8 rating in 11 games this season.

Beyond sitting out the rest of this game, it’s unclear how severe this issue is.

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