Mar 31, 2012; Toronto, ON, Canada; Buffalo Sabres center Derek Roy (9) picks up the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Derek Roy Undergoes Shoulder Surgery; Out Until November

Well, this certainly counts as a bump in the road, doesn’t it? As reported by Mike Heika, the Stars’ recently acquired center Derek Roy underwent shoulder surgery today and he is expected to be out until November (Mark Stepneski hypothesizes that he will be out until the latter half of November). This is terrible news for the team, who traded away fan favorite Steve Ott to acquire Roy and plug a massive hole in the top six. Now that hole will remain at least a month into the season at best. The timing doesn’t help  either. Roy will now miss all of training camp, preseason, and the opening month of the season. Even when he does return to “hockey shape”, he’s going to be far behind the rest of the team when it comes to chemistry and speed on the ice. Stars fans are crossing their collective fingers and praying that the trade doesn’t blow up in everyone’s face. Trading for a player in the last year of his contract was risky enough, now the team won’t get a chance to see him until mid to late November and even then we won’t know if he can return to top form in time to make the impact he was brought here to make.

Now the reigns will be handed to either Cody Eakin or recently-signed Tom Wandell, neither an option the team would prefer for that second line center spot. We will update this as news becomes available.

Update from Heika:

On Roy surgery, he had shoulder pain last season and played through it. Planned to do same this season. Stars felt now [was] the time to fix it. He was cleared medically and this was discovered in a full physical in Dallas. Had surgery in Dallas. Stars GM [Joe Nieuwendyk] said Roy could have played through it, but “we want the best Derek Roy we can get.”

Turns out it was the Stars who decided to give Roy the go ahead to get the shoulder issue fixed. The fans won’t be happy to hear that. You have to think Joe Nieuwendyk is more than confident in his ability to sign Roy to a new contract if he willingly lets a month of his season go down the drain. He wants the best Derek Roy he can get, but what’s the use if he’s not going to be around next season? Resigning Derek Roy has to become a priority during the season, because the closer the calendar gets to July without a new contract, the more uncertainty and anger will build within the Stars fan base. Giving up Steve Ott for what would amount to a rental will not sit well.


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