Anthony Wyse was supposed to help the Lincoln Stars' back line in 2014.
Wyse, the fifth overall pick in the 2014 USHL Phase II draft, never even made it to camp, let alone Lincoln.
Wyse underwent surgery for a torn labrum in each hip following the draft, after doctors found Wyse had an unnatural skating motion.
The Stars lost Dylan Woolf for three months to an ankle injury, Troy Terry to the national program and Wyse for the season all in a the span of a week last season.
“I think we were decimated on some levels that really impacted the start of our team and ultimately our competition level,” Stars general manager Jon Hull said. “In another sense, it probably allowed some other guys like Tye Ausmus and Ryan Jones and guys like that to see some more ice time and develop. Now that we have been through that, the best-case scenario is that (Wyse) is readily available to play for us this year. Had he had played last year, we may have lost him to the college level.”
“I was planning on coming to camp, and I was having some problems with my hips and groin,” Wyse said. “I thought I just kept pulling it and went to get some tests and found out they were both torn.”
For Wyse, who averages 21 minutes of playing time per game and has 10 assists, it's so far, so good this season after 10 months of rehab.
“It’s a slow process, but I’m happy with how I’ve been coming along,” Wyse said. “I was out for about 10 months with no contact or anything. I really don’t know what my expectations were, but I’m happy with how I am playing right now.
“It was devastating,” Wyse said of his injury last season. “I love playing this game, but at the same time it could be a lot worse. There are other people battling a lot worse than a setback for a year, so I looked at it that way.”
Hull thinks Wyse is still the same player the Stars drafted before his injury.
“I think he’s an impactful player,” Hull said. “He’s a guy that plays a lot. I think (head coach) Chris (Hartsburg) and (assistant) Mick (Berge) rely on him a lot, our staff relies on him a lot. He is a very calming player with the puck, he’s calculated, he’s able to distribute with precise accuracy. Anytime you can have a guy play 20 to 22 minutes a night, he’s a big asset to the team.”
Lincoln hosts the Chicago Steel at 7 p.m. Friday at the Ice Box.
Stars make trade
The Stars announced Thursday they acquired defenseman Alex Green from the Muskegon Lumberjacks in exchange for defenseman Christian Hausinger.
Green is committed to play at Cornell University.
"Alex's ability to skate and make good decisions with the puck both in open ice and under pressure, are what makes him a player we want," Hull said.