Players, staff confident in Williams' return

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- North Carolina basketball coach Roy Williams remained at UNC Hospitals on Wednesday evening following a 3½-hour operation to have a tumor removed from his right kidney.

Doctors have not determined whether the tumor was malignant or benign, and that may impact whether or not Williams has to have a second surgery next month to remove a tumor in his left kidney, a team spokesman told ESPN.com.

A second surgery could sideline him for a few workouts, the school said in a news release, but the 62-year-old Williams likely wouldn't miss any games. He is expected to be back on the court when UNC opens practice next month.

"The surgery went well and according to plan," Dr. Eric Wallen, professor of urology at UNC, said in a statement. "Coach Williams did great. I fully expect him to coach this season and for years to come. He could miss some practice time if we perform another procedure sometime in October, but he would be able to resume his coaching duties prior to the start of the regular season."

Williams is expected to be released from the hospital within the next few days, although it's unclear how much time he will miss leading up to preseason practice. He worked until the day before the surgery; the only reason he canceled a scheduled recruiting trip Tuesday was due to inclement weather.

The tumors were discovered during a physical exam earlier this month, although Williams had been having "some issues" before that, two of his assistant coaches said.

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