‘Canes defenseman Pesce undergoes season-ending shoulder surgery

Carolina Hurricanes

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – DECEMBER 03:Brett Pesce #22 of the Carolina Hurricanes skates against the Boston Bruins during the second period at TD Garden on December 03, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Carolina defenseman Brett Pesce will miss the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery on his right shoulder, the team announced on Thursday.

Pesce averaged just shy of 22 minutes of ice time through 61 games this season before suffering the injury during the Hurricanes’ 6-3 win at Toronto on Feb. 22. He had four goals and 14 assists.

The ‘Canes are now without two right-handed defensemen. Dougie Hamilton, who was set to play in the NHL All-Star Game, had surgery on his left leg on Jan. 17. He had 14 goals, 26 assists, and was averaging 23:17 of ice time in 47 games prior to his season-ending injury.

According to CapFriendly, Trevor van Riemsdyk is the team’s only healthy right-handed blueliner. The ‘Canes traded for Sami Vatanen and Brady Skjei at the deadline to shore up their defense in light of the injuries.

Carolina is awaiting the debut of the right-handed Vatanen, who is currently on injured reserve. He was injured in the Devils’ Feb. 1 game against Dallas. The NHL reported he suffered a setback in his recovery on Thursday.

Jaccob Slavin, Jake Gardiner, Joel Edmundson, Haydn Fleury, and Skjei are all left-handed shots.

Carolina is in Philadelphia Thursday before a weekend back-to-back set with the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins. The ‘Canes have lost four of their last five going into Thursday’s game against a Flyers team second in the Metropolitan Division. They’re three points back of the Islanders and the final wild-card spot in the playoffs.

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