Dallas Stars defenceman Sergei Zubov had surgery this week in Berlin on a sports hernia injury, leaving his status unclear as the team prepares to face Anaheim in the playoffs.
"We're hoping for a speedy recovery," Stars coach Dave Tippett said Friday.
Zubov has been out since Jan. 19 with a variety of ailments. The hernia dates to last year's playoffs, and an attempt to play through a foot injury this season created a groin strain.
He had surgery Feb. 24 to place a screw in a bone in his right foot and started skating again last week in hopes of returning for the playoffs. That's when the hernia flared up again, Tippett said.
Zubov had another sports hernia operation last summer after getting injured in Game 6 of a first-round series against Vancouver. The Stars were eliminated in Game 7.
Zubov had four goals and 30 assists in the first 40 games this season and was mentioned as a possible candidate for the Norris Trophy as the league's outstanding defenceman before he was sidelined by injuries.