Thrashers players injured in car crash

ATLANTA (AP) -- Atlanta Thrashers center Dan Snyder was critically injured in a car crash Monday night, and star right wing Dany Heatley broke his jaw in the accident.

The Thrashers said Tuesday that Snyder fractured his skull when Heatley's Ferrari crashed at about 10:30 p.m.

Police told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the Ferrari hit a wall at about 80 mph, and that Snyder was ejected from the car, which was cut in half.

Snyder was in critical condition at Grady Memorial Hospital, and the team released a statement saying he would have surgery Tuesday morning for a depressed fracture in his skull.

Heatley was in stable condition with a broken left jaw.


Snyder, who scored 10 goals and added four assists in 36 games for Atlanta last season, had surgery on his ankle earlier this month before the start of training camp. He was expected to start the season on the injured list.

The 25-year-old player signed with the Thrashers as a free agent in 1999 after playing four seasons of junior hockey for Owen Sound in the Ontario Hockey League.

He spent most of his first two professional seasons in the minor leagues, helping Orlando win the International Hockey League title in 2000-01 and playing on the Chicago Wolves' American Hockey League championship team in 2001-02. He played 35 games for Chicago last season, scoring 11 goals and adding 12 assists.

The 22-year-old Heatley, the NHL rookie of the year in 2001-02, led Atlanta in scoring last season with a team-record 41 goals and 48 assists, and is the Thrashers' career scoring leader with 155 points. He scored four goals in the 2003 All-Star game and was selected the MVP. The former University of Wisconsin player was the second overall pick in the 2000 draft.

The Thrashers last played on Saturday night, with Heatley scoring an overtime goal in a 3-2 exhibition victory over Nashville in Richmond, Va.

Atlanta is scheduled to play Florida at home on Wednesday night and complete its preseason schedule Friday night at home against Nashville. The Thrashers' first regular-season game is next Thursday night against Columbus.

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