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Clymer Out for Year

Ben Clymer revealed today that he's been hampered by an abdominal injury since opening night and has been told to shut it down for the remainder of the season. The winger will have surgery to repair a sports hernia in the next few days, General Manager George McPhee said.

It's going to be the same procedure that Jeff Friesen, Richard Zednik, Jamie Heward and Chris Clark have had done over the past year. Clymer will have the surgery performed by Dr. Michael Brunt in St. Louis and will have to rehab for six to eight weeks.

In other news, left wing Matt Pettinger will return to the lineup tonight against the Canadiens from the broken thumb he suffered three weeks ago. He'll skate on the checking line with Boyd Gordon and Alexandre Giroux, the Quebec City native who will be playing in front of about a dozen friends and family at Bell Centre.

As for Clymer, it's a bitter end to a difficult season. He began the year as a defenseman, but switched back to forward after 12 games and never really got back on track, partially because of the change and also because of the injury.

"He wanted to finish the season," Coach Glen Hanlon said. "But I opened the discussion [about shutting it down] because I think it's important for his career to get a three week jump on things."

Clymer said: "I first felt it the day before the Rangers game on Oct. 5. It's just gotten worse. The pain moves around in your stomach a little bit, but has kind of been in the same spot since about December."

Clymer (seven goals, 13 points and a plus minus rating of minus-17) said that the injury had affected his skating and ability to cut.

"The biggest thing is you can't do the quick movements fast," he said. "You can skate about 80 percent, but you can't do things like stop, then start. You just have no acceleration. I wanted to wait, but they wanted me to get a jump on rehab. In a lot of ways I agree. But I'm hockey player and I want to play."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  March 24, 2007; 12:42 PM ET
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