The Pittsburgh Penguins have been riding high in the last week since winning the 2016 Stanley Cup, but the seemingly endless stream of good news has come to a halt. Somewhat out of no where, top prospect Daniel Sprong underwent shoulder surgery today. From the Pens:
Pittsburgh Penguins forward Daniel Sprong underwent successful right shoulder surgery, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.
Sprong will be sidelined 7-to-8 months.
Penguins head team physician Dr. Dharmesh Vyas of the UPMC Sports Medicine team performed the surgery.
Sprong was injured during practice while serving as one of the ‘Black Aces’ during the Penguins’ Stanley Cup championship run.
Sprong's season last year (his draft + 1 year) saw him play 18 NHL regular season games before being returned back to juniors where he ripped up the Quebec Major Junior League (46 points in 33 games) followed by a successful playoff run in the AHL with the Wilkes-Barre Pens (5 goals and 7 points in 10 games), followed by his stint on the practice squad of the NHL playoffs.
7-8 months puts him in the January-February 2017 range to return, which is really a shame and a tough blow to Sprong's draft + 2 season. At age 19, he isn't eligible to play in the AHL regular season, he would either have to play in the NHL or Juniors again. It is a shame that the majority of his regular season will be chopped off, as a skill player he could use the development time.