The news just keeps getting worse for the struggling New Jersey Devils, who've lost one of their big guns for the next three months.
The 30th-place team in the League standings will be without star left wing Zach Parise until well into the new year after he underwent exploratory arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Tuesday and had a torn meniscus repaired.
"The good news is that the meniscus is 100 percent intact," Devils president and general manager Lou Lamoriello said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press late Tuesday evening. "They didn't have to do anything to it other than stitch it. It will be a 100 percent recovery and there will be no risk of anything down the road later and that's the most important thing."
Parise, a 30-goal scorer in each of the last four seasons, left Saturday's game in Los Angeles with what was called a lower-body injury and was sent home while the team continued its road trip. The 26-year-old had 3 goals and 6 points in the 12 games he played this season after a 45-goal season in 2008-09 and scoring 38 goals last season.
It's just another problem for the Devils, who are off to a 3-9-1 start under new coach John MacLean, have several key regulars injured and are tight against the salary cap.
"Adversity is part of life," Lamoriello told the AP. "As I said earlier, it's how you handle it and what you do with it. Right now, we just have to do what we are capable of doing. The players who are here have to step up and make the best of the opportunities they are going to get right now."
The Devils are 1-4-1 on a six-game trip that ends Wednesday in Chicago. Lamoriello said the Devils will use the same lineup that played in Monday's 3-0 loss at Vancouver.
"Quite frankly we have to come together a little more and overcome what we are going through," Lamoriello said. "We have been working hard and we just have to work a little harder and work a little smarter."