Toronto Maple Leafs forward Frederik Gauthier underwent successful lower-body surgery on Monday, according to a Friday afternoon report from Kristen Shilton of TSN Sports. As a result of the recent procedure, Gauthier will now encounter at least five months of recovery and rehabilitation.
It is also worth noting that the 22-year-old forward split this past season between Toronto and the franchise’s AHL affiliate in the Marlies.
“It’s a terrible loss for Freddy,” said Marlies head coach Sheldon Keefe of the initial injury, via Fansided. “He’s been playing as good of hockey as I’ve seen. With how he’s been skating and the extra speed that he’s been bringing for us, it’s really established him as our top centre. I think he has had a good year. It’s a big blow to him because I think it would have been big for his development to keep pushing along here in the playoffs.”
A former first-round pick by the Maple Leafs in 2013, Gauthier most recently appeared in 21 regular-season games for the franchise in 2016-2017. During that span, he produced a total of three points, thanks to two goals and one assist. For his NHL career, Gauthier currently owns an even two goals and two assists en route to four points across 28 games in all. He appeared in just seven regular-season games atop the highest level as a rookie back in 2015-2016.
On the other hand, the Maple Leafs managed to return to the postseason this year before coming up short against the Washington Capitals.