The hits just keep on coming for the Senators.

As the rest of the Senators were on the ice for their morning skate Tuesday, Milan Michalek was lying on an operating table. The Senators winger underwent athroscopic surgery on his right knee in New York City to clean up loose tissue that wasn't improving and sources say he'll be out a month.

The Senators are hopeful the decision to have a procedure on the knee now -- which has forced him to miss 15 of the club's last 17 games -- will give the high-scoring winger a chance to return in time for the post-season.

"It was to clean up debris," said coach Paul MacLean. "We anticipate that (he'll be back for the playoffs)."

The injury first started to bother Michalek during warmup on Feb. 13 in Pittsburgh. He missed 10 straight games, dressed for two and missed his fifth straight against the New York Islanders Tuesday at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Both sides agreed he'd give it rest and see if the surgery could be put off until the off-season, but it didn't work.

"It swelled up again. It looked like it was going to be something where if you can't play for a longer stretch than that, there's not much sense in doing it," said MacLean.

"We felt it if we did this now then I believe it would give him a chance to be back. There was internal discussions on it for sure and the best-case (scenario) was this."