Two Predators start offseason with surgical procedures

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 at 10:40pm

Mike Fisher did not go straight home last Wednesday after he cleaned out his locker at Bridgestone Arena.

Instead, the Nashville Predators center had to stop to see the team doctor to review the results of some tests he took a day earlier. What he found was that continued wear and tear on his shoulder had created more damage than an offseason could fix.

Consequently, Fisher was one of two Predators who underwent shoulder surgery. He and Nick Spaling each underwent corrective procedures Monday.

“You want to waste no time and make sure that everything’s looked after and that you’re on the road to recovery, if that’s what’s needed,” Fisher said.

The issue hampered Fisher shortly after he was acquired in a mid-February trade with Ottawa. After he recorded three points in his four games after the trade, he had just one — and took a limited number of faceoffs — in his next 16 contests.

He finished with eight points in the final seven regular-season contests and then had a team-high six points (three goals, three assists) in the first-round playoff series with Anaheim.

“For the most part, I felt pretty good,” he said. “I’m going to come back stronger next year.”

Spaling played 74 games during the regular season and appeared in all 12 during the postseason. He scored two playoff goals, including the game-winner in the series-clinching victory over Anaheim.

He underwent a procedure to repair a torn labrum, which he presumably sustained in Game 5 at Vancouver. He missed significant parts of the second and third periods in that contest but was in the lineup for Game 6 two days later.

“We had some guys playing in a lot of pain,” coach Barry Trotz said.