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Many issues now surround team

Updated: October 1, 2003, 2:25 PM ET
By Scott Burnside | Special to ESPN.com

The Atlanta Thrashers, who entered training camp with well-founded optimism they might make the playoffs for the first time since joining the league five seasons ago, will now have to embark on the critical first segment of the season without their best player in Dany Heatley.

A year ago, the Thrashers went 10 games without a win to start the season. Even when Hartley arrived in January and righted the ship, they finished 10 points out of a playoff berth.

Heatley's importance to ...

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