Training injury means Mike Fisher will miss at least first month of NHL season

Mike Fisher seemed likely to get the first crack at being the Nashville Predators’ first-line center in coach Peter Laviolette’s new attacking offense.

Now, though, no one will see Fisher on the ice for at least the first month of the season.

The team announced Monday afternoon that Fisher sustained a torn Achilles tendon in off-ice training last week and would miss the first four-six months of the season. That means he won’t return before mid-November.

The Predators released the following statement:

“Predators forward and alternate captain Mike Fisher sustained a ruptured Achilles tendon during a training session and underwent successful surgery on Thursday, July 3. We expect Mike to make a full recovery in four-to-six months, and look forward to his return to the ice.”

Fisher played 75 games in 2013-14 and recorded his sixth 20-goal season in a career that dates back to 1999. He was fourth on the team in scoring and fifth in power-play points.

A reliable two-way player and a veteran of 887 NHL games, he figured to be the most safe a reliable option to play between newly acquired left wing James Neal and right wing Craig Smith, last season’s leading goal scorer.

Candidates for that role now include 37-year-old Matt Cullen, whose best hockey last season was at left wing, Colin Wilson, who has been a wing for the majority of his NHL career, and Calle Jarnkrok, a 22-year-old with 12 games of NHL experience.