Jan 30, 2014, 4:59 PM EDT
One of this year’s feel-good stories has come to an abrupt end.
Vancouver forward Mike Santorelli has undergone season-ending shoulder surgery, the Canucks announced on Thursday. The procedure comes with a 5-6 month recovery window and wipes out any chance of Santorelli coming back this year.
Formerly of the Nashville Predators and Florida Panthers, Santorelli, 27, had a unsuccessful stint with Winnipeg last season before the Canucks signed him to a two-way deal in July, with the expectation he was bound for the farm team in Utica.
Turns out expectations were a tad low. Not only did Santorelli — a Vancouver native — make the big club, he proceeded to score 10 goals and 28 points in his first 48 games, all while averaging a career-high 18:34 TOI per game.
During a 3-1 win over Colorado in December, fans at Rogers Arena began chanting Santorelli’s name as he factored in on all three goals, scoring twice while setting up a third.
The injury is a tough blow for the Canucks and Santorelli, as he heads into the offseason facing great uncertainty. He’ll be a UFA coming off major shoulder surgery, hopeful that his half-season cameo with Vancouver will be enough to warrant another shot either with the Canucks, or another NHL club.
- Wild hoping last change can help turn the tide versus Avs 0
- Wild changes: Kuemper starts, Brodziak sits, Heatley draws in 2
- No hearing scheduled for Richards after Couture spear 8
- Kings’ Dustin Brown: ‘We got our [expletives] kicked’ 14
- Feeding frenzy: Sharks devour Kings to take 2-0 series lead 25
- Canadiens push Lightning to brink of elimination with 3-2 win 31
- WATCH LIVE: Los Angeles Kings at San Jose Sharks (Game 2) 0
- Bruins handle Red Wings 4-1, tie series 1-1 41
- Flyers overcome two-goal deficit to finally win at MSG 68
- NHL suspends Seabrook three games for charging into Backes 91
- Video: Seabrook ejected for charging Backes; will face hearing (update) (152)
- Video: Lucic spears DeKeyser from behind (116)
- Flyers want to ‘punish’ McDonagh (113)
- Bad luck strikes twice: Lightning goal waved off, Stamkos takes knee to head (111)
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension (91)