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Islanders' Tavares out for season, but doesn't need surgery on knee injured during Olympics

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Canada forward John Tavares is helped up off the ice by a trainer during the second period of a men's quarterfinal ice hockey game against Latvia at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. Tavares is out for the rest of the Olympics with an unspecified leg injury. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey) (The Associated Press)

John Tavares' season is still over, but the New York Islanders' star forward got a bit of good news upon returning from the Sochi Olympics.

The knee injury sustained in Canada's game against Latvia on Feb. 19 won't require surgery, team doctors told him Monday. After a rehab period of eight to 12 weeks, Tavares should be able to begin training for next season.

The 23-year-old Tavares revealed on Tuesday, while his teammates practiced at Nassau Coliseum, that this is the second time he has torn the MCL in his left knee. The first also occurred while Tavares was playing for Team Canada. That injury, when he was 16, came during a tryout for the country's Under-18 team. Tavares missed that tournament.

Although he didn't play in Canada's final two games in Sochi, Tavares brought home a gold medal that he said softened the blow of his injury.

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