is out indefinitely after undergoing preliminary eye surgery Thursday, hours after he was hit by a puck in the first period of Wednesday night's game against the Colorado Avalanche
"Manny had a procedure last night and he is going to see a specialist later on at some point, and we'll know more then," coach Alain Vigneault
"I can't speculate at this time until a specialist sees him today and more tests are done. It's too early for us to speculate one way or the other."
Malhotra, who does not wear a visor, was hit around the eye by a deflected puck early in the second period against the Avs. He skated quickly off the ice, holding his face.
Malhotra has 11 goals and 19 assists in 72 games. He is also ranked second in the NHL in faceoff winning percentage at 61.7 percent, and is among the League leaders in time on ice while shorthanded. He is a big reason the Canucks are second in the NHL in penalty-killing.
"He has had a very good impact in our dressing room, in his leadership role," Vigneault said. "That being said, I expect other players to do more. When we had other key players go out, we had other guys pick up the slack and that's what we expect now."
Material from wire services and team media was used in this report