Golden Knights’ Stone likely to undergo back surgery, be ready for camp next season

Vegas Golden Knights right wing Mark Stone (61) eludes Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Alex Killorn (17) during the first period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. (Chris O'Meara/AP)

Vegas Golden Knights captain Mark Stone will likely undergo back surgery on Wednesday, general manager Kelly McCrimmon said Monday, though he is still seeking consultations with doctors to decide on the best course of action.

If the surgery takes place, Stone is expected to be available at the start of training camp.

Stone battled injuries throughout the 2021-2022 season, beginning the season with a nagging lower-body injury and, as early as October, experiencing back-related difficulties. He was forced to leave the Golden Knights’ second game of the season, a 6-2 loss against the Los Angeles Kings, and missed a month.

Stone missed another seven games in December and January and, following the Golden Knights’ first game after the All-Star break, landed on the long-term injured reserve with what the team characterized as an upper-body injury. He didn’t play for the next two months.

When Stone returned in April, with the Golden Knights chasing a playoff berth, he still appeared hindered by the ailment, scoring just one goal and one assists over his final nine games after notching 28 points in his first 28 appearances.

“It’s never easy rehabbing injuries during the season,” Stone said earlier in the year. “You always want to try and rush yourself back, to get back in. I think I made a couple mistakes throughout this season trying to get back too quick. I obviously wanted to at least give it a try and help this team get in, and I wasn’t able to do so.”

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