Stars GM Jim Nill said that in the coming days, Martin Hanzal will be having season ending back surgery. Recovery time is expected to be 6-7 months.
— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) March 9, 2018
Martin Hanzal Done for the Year
The 31-year-old has been out for more than two weeks, his last start was a 2-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks. His spinal-fusion surgery carries an estimated recovery time of six to seven months making his availability for the beginning of next season in doubt as well.
This off-season Hanzal signed a three-year deal worth $14.25 million. So far this season he has appeared in 38 games notching five goals, one being a game-winner, and five assists totalling 10 points. Hanzal also had 23 penalty minutes and was a -14 in +- this season. His possession numbers also showed a struggling season putting up a 47.6 percent Corsi, and -4.3 Corsi relative. He has been a negative player when he is on the ice.
What This Means for the Stars
The Dallas Stars are currently holding down the first wildcard spot in the Western Conference. Although their lead is only by one point over the Los Angeles Kings. In fact, the Stars are only two points from being outside of a playoff spot.
Hanzal’s point totals this year have been a bit of a disappointment however the forward has been in the NHL since 2012 and this type of experience can prove to be invaluable for a franchise looking to make a late-season run at the playoffs and potentially have a shot at the Stanley Cup.
While the surgery comes with a long-term recovery period back injuries can come with even more complications causing the injuries to carry on well past the estimated recovery time. Look no further than Minnesota Wild forward Zach Parise who had surgery who had back surgery back in October 2017, with only an estimated two month recovery time he would end up missing more than eight months.
The Stars have yet to make a corresponding roster transaction with this announcement today. However, clearly Hanzal will be placed on injured reserve and a player from the AHL affiliate Texas Stars will most likely receive a call-up.
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