Devils forward Brian Boyle diagnosed with leukemia

The New Jersey Devils say veteran forward Brian Boyle has been diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia, a type of bone-marrow cancer that the team's doctor says can be treated with medication.

During a conference call Tuesday, Devils team doctor Michael Farber said the leukemia was discovered early. General manager Ray Shero said it was found in blood work during team physicals at the start of camp.

CML is the same disease that former NHL forward Jason Blake played through after being diagnosed in 2007.

Boyle, a 32-year-old center, signed a two-year, $5.1 million deal with New Jersey this offseason but has been away from the team while being diagnosed. He said his mindset for a return is Oct. 7, when New Jersey opens the season against Colorado. The team, though, has not put a timetable on when Boyle will skate.

"I don't like missing games. I feel as close to normal as you can feel," Boyle said.

He added:"We have a good plan of attack and I look forward to getting on the ice and playing."

Boyle has played for the Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs. He added a veteran presence to a young Toronto team after being acquired from Tampa Bay at the trade deadline last season. The Leafs pushed the Presidents' Trophy-winning Washington Capitals to six games in a first-round playoff loss.

Boyle has 169 points in 624 NHL games.

"I've been blessed so many times and in so many ways," Boyle said. "This is an opportunity for me. I plan on living a normal life."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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