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Henrik Zetterberg has surgery on his back, may return in time for playoffs

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Detroit Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg underwent what appears to be a successful surgery on Friday to repair the herniated disk that knocked him out of the Olympics after just one game.

"It went very, very well," said assistant general manager Ryan Martin. "They removed part of a disk that was rubbing on a nerve. It was what they thought it was. The recovery process looks very, very positive. … It's a really good sign. They feel confident this procedure will help in the long term."

There is even some hope Zetterberg can return for the playoffs, as he is expected to miss two months.

Zetterberg had already missed 13 games this season due to his back, which has been problematic for years. He was still up to make the trip to Sochi, even being named captain of the Swedish team. He scored in his only game of the tournament, but said his back felt “20 times worse” afterwards.

Sweden has played well in his absence, going undefeated. After beating Finland in Friday’s semifinal, Sweden will now face Canada Sunday in the gold medal game.

Zetterberg has played well in his second season as Detroit’s captain, scoring 48 points in 45 games. The four-time Olympian already has a gold medal, with Sweden winning in 2006.

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