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New Stars forward Martin Hanzal to miss start of camp with ankle injury

2017 first-round pick Miro Heiskanen's status for camp also up in the air due to concussion symptoms

by Mark Stepneski @StarsInsideEdge / Inside Edge

7.18.17 Martin Hanzal

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The Stars have a few injury issues heading into training camp. Center Martin Hanzal will miss the start of camp in Cedar Park due to a sprained ankle, coach Ken Hitchcock said Thursday.

Hanzal, who was in a walking boot as the team departed for Cedar Park Thursday afternoon, is not expected to skate until the team returns to Frisco next week.

"He won't skate until we come back after the day off on [Sept.] 20th," Hitchcock said.

Hitchcock said Hanzal, one of the team's key offseason free-agent signings, suffered the injury while skating with his teammates in Frisco recently. The Stars decided to get him healthy instead of trying to have Hanzal push it early in camp.

"We just made the decision to get this 100 percent," Hitchcock said. "He plays so many heavy minutes that we need him as close to 100 percent as possible. It's only four or five days. This buys us time to be 100 percent, so let's go for it."

The status of 2017 first-round pick Miro Heiskanen for training camp is up in the air due to a head injury. Heiskanen, who was injured in a Champions Hockey League game earlier this month, was supposed to fly into Dallas from Finland this past weekend but didn't due to the injury.

"He's got concussion symptoms," Stars general manager Jim Nill said. "He got hit and received nine stitches in the facial area. With the concussion symptoms, we didn't want to fly him over here."

Nill said the Stars will decide over the next couple days whether to bring Heiskanen over for camp or just allow him to get healthy and get going with HIFK, his team in Finland's top league. 

"He's going under some concussion protocol testing. We are going to see where he is over the next two or three days," Nill said. "We are going to get to a point where [his team in Finland] is already playing, he hasn't skated for two or three weeks, and he would hardly skate here. I don't want to interrupt his season too much. I want to be careful. We'll know in the next two or three days."

Defense prospect Chris Martenet is expected to be out two months after being diagnosed with mono. Martenet played for the Stars at the just concluded NHL Prospect Tournament in Traverse City but missed the final two games due to illness. Tests confirmed he had mono on Thursday.

Martenet, who is turning pro this season, has been sent home for now. 

This story was not subject to approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.

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