Craig Anderson's wife diagnosed with cancer

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OTTAWA, ON - OCTOBER 15: Craig Anderson #41 of the Ottawa Senators looks on during a stoppage in play against the Montreal Canadiens at Canadian Tire Centre on October 15, 2016 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images)
Craig Anderson of the Ottawa Senators looks on during a stoppage in play against the Montreal Canadiens at Canadian Tire Centre on October 15, 2016 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. (Getty Images)

Nicholle Anderson, the wife of Ottawa Senators goaltender Craig Anderson, has been diagnosed with cancer, team general manager Pierre Dorion said Saturday.

Last Thursday, the 35-year-old Craig Anderson was given a leave of absence for personal reasons though further details weren’t given at the time. After backup Andrew Hammond was injured Friday against the Calgary Flames, Dorion said Nicholle urged Craig to rejoin the team for the time being. The Senators play at the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday.

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Dorion did not give specifics on the nature of Nicholle Anderson’s illness, but was emotional in his address to media, pausing at points as he tried to collect himself. Below is his statement.

“Nicholle Anderson has been diagnosed with cancer. It’s very early in the process. We don’t have many tests right now but we’re there for them and right now they’re in a wait period

Given that they’re in a wait period and Andrew Hammond’s injury last night, Nicholle told Craig to phone me, which he did during the game. We talked to Craig after the game and it was determined that because they’re in a wait period and they were going to drive to Ottawa together as a family today that it would be all right for Craig to come and rejoin his team.”

We’re very proud of Craig and Nicholle. He and his wife are dealing with a tremendous issue right now and for him to be around his teammates, with his presence, he’s going to be embraced by his teammates and it’s only going to help us grow as a family and a hockey family.

We want to reiterate our support for Craig, Nicholle, their family. His hockey family. (Owner Eugene) Melnyk, our coaching staff, our support staff, our management, we’re all behind him and we’re going to do anything we can for both Craig and Nicholle. We’ve gone through this with (GM) Bryan (Murray). We know Bryan is battling cancer also. We are really reunited as a hockey organization and we believe in hockey fights cancer.”

Dorion added, “We made this decision consulting with both Craig and Nicholle, their doctors and felt because of this timerfame that it was all right for him to join the team.”

He also said he didn’t know how long Anderson would be back with the team. Dorion said further details could be added this week if Craig and Nicholle Anderson opt meet with reporters.

The last few years, cancer has hit the Senators hard. In April of 2015, assistant coach Mark Reeds died after a battle with cancer. In November, 2014 former general manager Bryan Murray revealed he had Stage 4 colon cancer. Murray stepped down from the GM position last offseason.

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Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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