Port Adelaide expect Robbie Gray to return for the start of next season following surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
Midfield and forward utility Gray underwent a traditional knee reconstruction in Adelaide on Monday night after scans confirmed he suffered a torn ACL during Port's 24-point loss to Collingwood on Saturday.
According to the Power's football operations manager Peter Rohde, the surgery has successfully repaired the ACL, as well as some minor damage to Gray's knee capsule.
The other knee ligaments and cartilage were not damaged.
"It's about as good an outcome as we could have hoped for considering what happened," Rohde told the club's website.
"A lot of people who saw the video certainly thought it could have been a lot worse.
"It was a pretty straightforward reconstruction in that there were no other ligaments damaged and the cartilage is OK."
Following separate ACL injuries, Gray's team-mate David Rodan has twice undergone ligament augmentation and reconstruction surgery (LARS), which involves the use of a synthetic replacement ligament.
Rodan's treatment allowed him to return far ahead of the ordinary schedule for ACL recovery, but Port have opted to follow the traditional method in the case of Gray.
"Robbie's rehab will be pretty straight forward," Rohde said.
"He won't play this year, but we think he'll be running by the end of the season.
"He won't do any contested work in the pre-season, but he'll be able to do plenty of running so we'd like to think he could be involved in trial matches and be back for the start of next season."
Gray, picked at 55 in the 2006 draft, has made 70 appearances for the Power since debuting in 2007, including every match last season.