Rick Nash of the Columbus Blue Jackets underwent minor throat surgery Monday, which could force him to miss some games for Canada at the upcoming world hockey championships.
The six-foot-four 215-pound left-winger had a follow-up procedure done stemming from a tonsillectomy four years ago. The recovery time is expected to be two to four weeks.
Nash told the Columbus Dispatch via text message he was sore but eager to play at the tournament, hosted in Canada for the first time.
The 12-team tournament will run May 2-18 with games in Halifax and in Quebec City.
Nash has represented Canada in international tournaments on five previous occasions, including a 4-2 gold medal win over Finland at the worlds last year in Russia, where he was named the tournament's most valuable player.
Canada is being coached by Blue Jackets bench boss Ken Hitchcock, and also includes Columbus goaltender Pascal Leclaire and forward Jason Chimera.
Thirteen players have been named to the team with more coming, including from teams eliminated from the first round of the NHL playoffs.
Team Canada opens its training camp April 24 in Quebec City and will drop the puck against Slovenia its first tournament game in Halifax on May 2.
The gold medal game will take place May 18 at the Pepsi Colisee.