Report: Lightning’s Ohlund may not be able to play again

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According to a Swedish newspaper report, Mattias Ohlund’s career could be in jeopardy.

Hockey Expressen interviewed the Tampa Bay defenseman after he underwent major surgery on his left knee. The details of the procedure, from the Tampa Bay Times:

The complicated procedure performed by noted orthopedist Anthony Miniaci will use a thin layer of titanium to resurface the bottom of the femur behind the kneecap. That should create a cushion where cartilage that usually covers the bone has flaked off to such an extent there is painful bone-on-bone rubbing at the patellofemoral joint.

The following are quotes Ohlund gave to Expressen (translated via Google):

“I went through a covered knee surgery ten days ago here in the U.S. that requires half a year of rehabilitation, but it is uncertain if I can come back and play hockey again.

“I’ve got a titanium plate inserted, and a piece of plastic, which lies against one another so that there is no bone on bone. The doctors can not guarantee that it holds for the hockey game at top level”

Ohlund did state that his goal “is to come back and play again,” but that resuming his NHL career “will take a long time.”

The 35-year-old rearguard missed the entire 2011-12 season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on both knees in October. While the right one has rehabilitated well, the left required this latest procedure, which requires approximately six months of rehab.

Ohlund is three seasons into a seven-year, $25 million deal signed in 2009 — one that carries an annual cap hit of $3.6 million until 2016. In his last full season with Tampa he finish second among all Bolts blueliners in hits and blocked shots and was one of the team’s alternate captains.