Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Drury Out Six Weeks With Knee Surgery

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Per Peter Botte, Chris Drury will be undergo surgery on his ailing knee and be out for the next six weeks.  The Rangers captain had fluid drained from the knee last week, but apparently that was not enough to alleviate the cause of problem, so they will go in and try to fix it.

The injury is the third injury to cost the 34-year-old Drury significant time this season.  Drury broke his finger during training camp, and missed the first couple games of the season and then broke the same finger again in his first game back, costing him 29 more.  In 23 games he has played this season, Drury has zero goals and four assists while playing primarily on the fourth line, penalty kill and taking defensive zone draws.
A six week timetable would put Drury’s return towards the end of March, with approximately two weeks left in the season.  Drury's absence will hurt the Rangers in terms of penalty killing and faceoffs.  They have enough depth in terms of forwards to kill off penalties to sustain there, but I would look for the Rangers to consider trading for a faceoff specialist between now and the deadline as the issues on faceoffs are only made worse by this news.  I will take a look at some potential candidates in the next few days.

I would also like to go on the record and apologize to Drury and the organization for the belief that the initial reports of his injury were an attempt to save face for the captain instead of making him a healthy scratch because of poor play.  Obviously there was more to the story than just the timing of it and I was wrong to assume otherwise.  Hopefully Drury getting this taken care will allow him to play more like his former self upon his return and help the Rangers make a final push to close the regular season.

This news begs a couple of questions: Was Drury's poor play a product of the balky knee?  Did Drury continue to play through because the team had other injuries, where had they been healthy he takes care of his knee sooner? Does this latest injury make retirement more of an option for Drury this summer?