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Silver Knights coach diagnosed with prostate cancer

Updated October 28, 2021 - 5:41 pm

Manny Viveiros has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, the Silver Knights coach revealed Thursday during the “HSK Today” radio show.

Viveiros took a non-COVID medical leave of absence from the American Hockey League team on Oct. 15. Assistant Jamie Heward has served as the interim coach with assistants Joel Ward, Fred Brathwaite and Andrew Doty.

“We’ve been trying at the very early stages a game plan of what we want to do going forward,” Viveiros said on KLAV-AM (1230). “Now that we have one in place through the doctors, we have an opportunity now to go after this and treat this.”

Viveiros, 55, is expected to be behind the bench when the Silver Knights host Bakersfield at 11 a.m. Friday at Orleans Arena as part of a Nevada Day doubleheader with the Golden Knights.

He said he will remain with the team until mid-December and then take another leave of absence to undergo surgery.

As part of a routine physical during training camp in September, Viveiros said he underwent a blood test that revealed elevated levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). He then met with a urologist and a biopsy confirmed the cancer diagnosis.

Viveiros said the cancer has not spread, and now that doctors have determined what stage it is in, a treatment plan was put in place. He is optimistic of making a full recovery.

“Quite frankly, it probably saved my life. Just having just a simple blood test,” Viveiros said. “You think about your family and you want to be there. You want to be there for a long period of time. That comes into your thoughts right away.

“We’ve got some pretty positive news — not pretty positive — very positive news where the doctors are quite confident that we have a good chance of curing this and beating this.”

Viveiros led the Silver Knights to the Pacific Division title in their inaugural season and a berth in the Pacific Division AHL hockey finals.

The Silver Knights are off to a 2-1-1 start after dropping a pair of games last weekend to Abbotsford. Viveiros returned to the team Thursday and praised his staff and general manager Tim Speltz for how they’ve handled his absence.

“HSK, my staff and the players, they’re an extension of my family. It’s good to be back,” Viveiros said. “From a selfish point of view, the game can’t come early enough.

“It’s certainly something that I’m really looking forward to and getting back and getting an opportunity to compete alongside my staff and my players here.”

Contact David Schoen at dschoen@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow @DavidSchoenLVRJ on Twitter.

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