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Stars' Stephen Johns returns after missing nearly 22 months

Posted: Mon Jan 20, 2020 5:26 am
by admin
Stephen Johns played in his first game in almost 22 months when the Dallas Stars visited the Minnesota Wild on Saturday night.

Forward Radek Faksa was placed on injured reserve to make room for Johns on the active roster.

Johns had been out since late in the 2017-18 season because of post-traumatic headaches. The Stars have said the condition isn't related to concussions.

The 27-year-old defenseman hasn't played since March 29, 2018, at the Wild. It was the last of a career-high 75 games in his third NHL season. Johns missed the last five games that year before sitting out all of last season as headaches persisted.

He played two games on a conditioning assignment with the Texas Stars of the AHL before rejoining Dallas on Thursday.

The return of Johns coincides with the Stars' first game without defenseman Miro Heiskanen. The 20-year-old standout is in the concussion protocol after leaving Thursday's loss to Buffalo with what the team initially termed an upper-body injury.

Johns made his debut for Dallas late in the 2014-15 season and played in all 13 of the team's playoff games as a rookie. He has 13 goals, 15 assists and 306 blocked shots in 150 career regular-season games.