Penguins Defenseman Kris Letang Out Indefinitely After Suffering Stroke

There's some really unfortunate news coming out of the NHL, as the Pittsburgh Penguins have announced that star defenseman Kris Letang will be out of the lineup indefinitely after suffering a stroke on Monday.

The good news, according to the team's press release, is that Letang is not experiencing any lasting effects from the stroke. He will continue to undergo tests throughout the week, and it's believed that his condition is not career-threatening.

General manager Ron Hextall announced the news on Wednesday.

“Kris reported symptoms to the training staff on Monday and was immediately taken to the hospital for testing,” said Hextall.

“The test results were shocking to hear, but we are grateful that Kris is doing well. We are thankful to the medical staff and the physicians at UMPC. He is a warrior on the ice, but first and foremost, he is a son, father, husband and friend. His health is our number one priority.”

Letang Hopes To Raise Awareness

Letang also released a statement saying that he hoped his experiences could raise awareness of such issues.

“I am fortunate to know my body well enough to recognize when something isn’t right,” the 35-year-old said.

“While it is difficult to navigate this issue publicly, I am hopeful it can raise awareness. It is important for me that my teammates, family and the fans know that I am okay. I am optimistic that I will be back on the ice soon.”

This is the second stroke that Letang has dealt with during his 17-year NHL career, all of it spent in Pittsburgh. He had another in 2014, and testing afterward revealed he had a small hole in his heart, one that typically closes for most people on its own.

For most of his career, Letang has been the linchpin of the Penguins' blueline and was key to helping them win three Stanley Cups during his tenure.

Even at this point in his career, he still logs considerable minutes. Through 21 games this season he has averaged just under 24 minutes of ice time, which leads the team, He has also posted 12 points so far this year.

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Matt is a University of Central Florida graduate and a long-suffering Philadelphia Flyers fan living in Orlando, Florida. He can usually be heard playing guitar, shoe-horning obscure quotes from The Simpsons into conversations, or giving dissertations to captive audiences on why Iron Maiden is the greatest band of all time.