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Canucks probing their handling of Pearson's injury after Hughes' remark

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The Vancouver Canucks are looking into how they dealt with Tanner Pearson's season-ending injury after teammate Quinn Hughes raised concern about the situation Thursday night.

Canucks president of hockey operations Jim Rutherford told Sportsnet's Iain MacIntyre the club started an internal review Friday to find out exactly what happened with the veteran forward. Rutherford claims he didn't know there were any potential issues with Pearson's medical care until Hughes brought it up following a loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.

"I feel bad for him. I mean, it wasn't handled properly, and you know, it's not really a good situation he's got there, and hopefully, he's going to be alright," Hughes said.

The blue-liner clarified the comments Friday.

"I wasn't trying to direct blame at anyone," Hughes said, according to MacIntyre. "I don't think it's really anyone's fault. It's just an unfortunate situation. But in a situation like that, of course, I care about my teammates and, you know, I hate to see a guy go through hell like that."

Rutherford added that upon hearing what Hughes initially said, the executive spoke to general manager Patrik Allvin and head coach Bruce Boudreau, both of whom also claimed to be unaware of any issues pertaining to Pearson aside from his multiple setbacks.

"At that point, I just started to gather information and talk to people that are involved and start to do an investigation as to what really happened," Rutherford said. "Other than that, I can't say a whole lot because we're dealing with the privacy of medical information.

"We take the situation very seriously. We certainly have to look at everything here when something like this happens, and we're going to continue to do that."

Rutherford said he plans to assemble those in the organization from management, the medical staff, and Pearson or his agent, Joe Resnick, on a conference call so everyone can be involved in the discussion.

Pearson will miss the rest of this campaign after having a third surgical procedure on his hand, the club announced on Allvin's behalf earlier Thursday. The 30-year-old was originally expected to be out for only four-to-six weeks after undergoing his first surgery on the ailment Nov. 10, one day after injuring his hand. Pearson then had a second one performed a month later after it didn't heal as planned.

He was limited to 14 games this season, collecting one goal and four assists. The Canucks acquired him in a trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins in February 2019. Pearson is under contract with Vancouver through 2023-24.

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