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Canucks' Ohlund to miss rest of regular season after having surgery

VANCOUVER - Canucks defenceman Mattias Ohlund will miss the rest of the regular season after having surgery Thursday to remove bone chips from his left knee.

Ohlund, who leads Canucks defensemen with 24 points in 53 games, played Wednesday in Anaheim, but didn't travel with the team to Phoenix for Thursday night's game against the Coyotes, instead returning to Vancouver for surgery.

The Canucks, who are also missing defensemen Aaron Miller (shoulder) and Lukas Krajicek (shoulder), hope Ohlund will be back for the playoffs this season if the team qualifies.

"After further consultation with our team doctors it was determined that surgery was the best course of action," Canucks general manager Dave Nonis said in a statement. "The best long-term decision for Mattias and our hockey club is to have this addressed immediately."

Vancouver was in the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference, just two points ahead of Nashville, heading into Thursday night's games.

The bone chips were detected by an MRI exam March 5 and Ohlund said he would take up to a week off to see if the swelling went down before deciding on surgery, which has a four-to six-week recovery time. But he returned three days later, playing Saturday against St. Louis and Monday in Los Angeles, averaging 24 minutes before playing less than 15 during a 4-1 loss in Anaheim.

Ohlund had a similar surgery late in the 2002-03 season and returned to appear in 13 playoff games after missing six weeks and 22 games.

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