Islanders goalie DiPietro to have surgery

New York Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro will have surgery to

repair a sports hernia, likely sidelining the oft-injured player

for most of the rest of the season.

The Islanders confirmed Friday night that DiPietro is scheduled

to have surgery Tuesday.

Newsday first reported the surgery, saying Islanders general

manager Garth Snow said the best-case scenario for DiPietro’s

return was the beginning of April.

The 30-year-old goalie has played eight games this season, going

3-2-3 with a 3.73 goal-against average. He hasn’t played since

sustaining a groin injury Dec. 3 in Dallas.

DiPietro has played only 63 games the last three seasons,

missing time because of hip and knee injuries and facial fractures.

He signed a 15-year, $67.5 million contract before the 2006-07