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'Beast' Chychrun will play for Coyotes this season, Tocchet says

Defenseman likely to miss start of 2017-18 after knee surgery Aug. 3 @NHLdotcom

Jakob Chychrun might miss the start of the season after knee surgery Aug. 3, but coach Rick Tocchet said he's certain the 19-year-old defenseman will play in 2017-18.

"He's just a beast," Tocchet told SiriusXM NHL Network Radio on Friday. "If this happened to somebody else, you might have a guy who's out for the year. I don't know the time frame (for his recovery), but it's not for the year. It's something that he's going to bounce back [from]. He's an animal. It's almost like we've got to crank this kid down a little bit."

Chychrun injured his knee during offseason training. The Coyotes said after the surgery that he would be out indefinitely, but they did not reveal the nature or severity of the injury.

Selected with the No. 16 pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, Chychrun had 20 points (seven goals, 13 assists) and a minus-14 rating in 68 games for the Coyotes last season. He is the son of former NHL defenseman Jeff Chychrun.

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