Nashville Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne will not begin the next stage of his recovery from a hip infection, as was targeted earlier this month, the team said in a statement Friday.
The target date for Rinne to begin more strenuous activity was Dec. 20, general manager David Poile said Dec. 5.
"However, as we have realized and learned throughout this process, the recovery and rehabilitation from a bacterial infection does not involve a specific timetable. It does come with a degree of uncertainty," the statement Friday said.
"To that end, and in taking every possible precaution to ensure the bacterial infection is managed and controlled with a goal of returning Pekka to full strength, the doctors have recommended Pekka remain on limited activity for two weeks before considering more strenuous activity in his recovery and rehabilitation."
The Predators said, "It is important to note that Pekka and the medical team have not encountered any setbacks in his recovery and rehabilitation."
But they added, "While we were cautiously optimistic Pekka might begin activities now, our primary concern has been, and is, for the long-term. We -- Pekka, the team, doctors and our fans -- want the same thing and that is for Pekka to be at 100 percent and back in goal for the Predators as soon as possible. However, we also understand we are dealing with a situation that includes some uncertainty and does not involve a specific timetable for treatment and recovery."
Rinne had hip surgery in May, then underwent arthroscopic surgery Oct. 24 to treat the bacterial infection.
In nine games this season, Rinne is 4-4-1 with a 2.31 goals-against average and a .917 save percentage. The Predators are 11-12-2 without him, 16-16-3 overall.