Shattenkirk needs abdominal surgery, derailing possible Norris campaign

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The St. Louis Blues will have to get by without Kevin Shattenkirk for a while. The 26-year-old all-star defenseman will have abdominal surgery after sustaining an injury when he collided with Washington’s Alex Ovechkin in the first period of Sunday’s game.

Here’s the play in question:

The Blues announced that he will have the procedure in seven-to-10 days and be regarded as week-to-week after that.

He ranks second among defensemen this season with 40 points in 49 contests and is leading blueliners with 32 assists. If he’s able to return before the end of the campaign, he might still surpass his current career-highs of 10 goals, 35 assists, and 45 points. St. Louis was giving him an average of 22:54 minutes per contest, including 3:23 minutes with the man advantage.

The Blues have won five straight games as they battle for the Central Division title. They’re just two points shy of the division-leading Nashville Predators.