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Canadian Press
9/14/2006 3:06:15 PM

MONTREAL (CP) - Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu hopes to put off surgery on a small cataract on his left eye until after the NHL season. Koivu, who had surgery to repair a detached retina this summer, said Thursday he is optimistic he will be ready to play the 2006-07 season despite lingering difficulties from an eye injury suffered during the playoffs in April.

The 31-year-old said he was left with a blind spot in his peripheral vision that likely is permanent and then developed a cataract.

"Right now, the doctors think it's in an early stage," he said as the Canadiens completed pre-camp physical exams at the Bell Centre. "I'll try to play with a contract lens, but if it gets worse, then we're going to have to do something about it during the season.

"Obviously, the best scenario would be to get it done at the end of the year, but right now, we're going to wait and see how it will progress."

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