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Vanbiesbrouck to undergo surgery

Florida Panthers goaltender John Vanbiesbrouck will undergo arthroscopic surgery to repair a small cartilage tear in his right shoulder, and will miss the 1996 World Cup of Hockey, the team announced Thursday.

Vanbiesbrouck's injury is a "nagging, overuse injury," according to the Panthers' orthopedist, David Attarian.

The operation will likely be scheduled for early August, Attarian said in a statement.

"Vanbiesbrouck's shoulder will be back to 100 percent within 2-5 weeks," Attarian said.

Due to the timing of the surgery and the recovery, Vanbiesbrouck will not accept an invitation to play on Team USA, which begins training camp Aug. 15 in Providence, R.I.

Guy Hebert of the Anaheim Mighty Ducks was chosen to replace him.

The eight-nation World Cup of Hockey tournament includes teams from Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden.

The goaltender is expected to recover by the time Panthers training camp opens Sept. 7 at Summerside, Prince Edward Island.

COYOTES: Russian center Alexei Zhamnov and the Phoenix Coyotes are engaged in a faceoff away from the ice.

"Alex won't be coming back," agent Ron Salcer said. "We've requested that they trade him."

Bobby Smith, executive vice president, doesn't think that will happen.

"He's a very gifted player, and we feel he's going to be in our lineup this season," Smith said.

Zhamnov, 25, has missed 63 regular-season games over the last four years, including 24 last season after a vicious hit. A problem related to a disc in his lower back accounted for the rest.

As a Group II free agent, he can entertain offers from any team. The Coyotes have the right to match, and Smith said they will do so.

ISLANDERS: Craig Fisher, the IHL's leading goal scorer last season, signed with the team. Fisher, 26, scored 74 goals along with 56 assists in 82 games for the IHL's Orlando Solar Bears.