Ottawa

Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson says wife Nicholle is cancer-free

Ottawa Senators netminder Craig Anderson says his wife Nicholle is currently cancer-free, seven months after she was diagnosed with a rare form of throat cancer.

Anderson left team during 2016-17 season while wife underwent treatment

Ottawa Senators goaltender Craig Anderson talks with reporters in Senators' dressing room in Ottawa on Saturday, May 27, 2017. (Fred Chartrand/The Canadian Press)

Ottawa Senators netminder Craig Anderson says his wife Nicholle is currently cancer-free, seven months after she was diagnosed with a rare form of throat cancer.

"As of right now, everything's clean. And we'll just cross our fingers," Anderson said on Saturday, speaking to reporters at the Canadian Tire Centre.

Anderson took a leave of absence from the Senators in October 2016 to deal with what he called a personal matter — one that general manager Pierre Dorion later disclosed was his wife's cancer diagnosis.

Craig Anderson and his wife, Nicholle. (Twitter)

He returned to the club later that month after Nicholle urged him to, and posted a 37-save shutout in his first game back.

Anderson then took a longer absence as she underwent treatment for the disease — and once again returned to the ice with a shutout.

The Masterton Memorial trophy nominee said while he and his wife are optimistic, they know they still have to remain vigilant.

"We've got to do scans, I think, every three months," he said.

"As of right now, things are positive. But you know, you're not out of the woods until you get, I think, two years of cancer-free news."

'Hockey helped me through all of this'

In a weekend blog post, Nicholle Anderson said she received the news that her scans were clear on May 25, the same day the Senators were eliminated from the NHL playoffs with a heartbreaking 3-2 loss to Pittsburgh in double overtime.

She said she didn't know whether to "jump with excitement or cry tears of joy." 

"I truly believe hockey helped me through all of this, with the playoff run," she wrote. "I couldn't have asked for a better year and memories."

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