Colorado captain Joe Sakic
underwent successful surgery for a herniated disc, and the Avalanche said Wednesday he's expected to be out approximately 10 weeks.
"After weeks of rehabilitation, it was determined that surgery was the safest path to a complete recovery," Avalanche team physician Andrew Parker said in a statement. "This was our best option, and the surgery went as expected."
Sakic was diagnosed with a herniated disc after leaving during the first shift of the Avs' Nov. 28 game at Phoenix and hasn't played since. He was expected to miss about six weeks, but injured himself again in early December in an incident involving a snow blower.
The future Hall of Famer reportedly was attempting to dislodge some wet snow from around the blades. While the blower was off, when the snow was cleared, the torque from the blades jammed his hand. Sakic suffered five broken bones in his hand and required pins in three injured fingers. He underwent surgery to repair the three broken fingers and tendon damage.
Sakic was expected to miss about three months after the hand surgery, but the timetable for his return has been pushed back again.
"I understand that this was the best way for me to return to the ice, so now my focus and goal will be to get back as soon as possible to help my teammates in the final weeks of the season," Sakic said in a statement released by the team following the back surgery.
The Avs' captain will be resting at home for the next seven to 10 days recovering from the procedure.
Sakic has only played in 15 games this season, scoring 2 goals and adding 10 assists. He missed 38 games last season due to a groin injury and sports hernia surgery.
The 39-year-old is the leading scorer in franchise history with 625 goals, 1,016 assists and 1,641 points in 1,378 regular-season games. He also has 84 goals and 188 points in 172 playoff games, and led the Avalanche to Stanley Cup championships in 1996 and 2001.