We had a very newsy Friday in Stars land. First Fabian Brunnstrom was put on waivers, expected to clear and play for Cedar Park with the Texas Stars. Then there was a potential Fistric vs Conspiracy theory fueled Red Wing fans going on that we had to take part in. (It wasn't a dirty hit and people with the league have said as much already.)
Then the news came down that the Stars have officially added former NHL player and fitness guru Gary Roberts to their staff. Roberts and Joe Nieuwendyk have a pre-existing relationship, surely facilitating such a partnership. Late in the day on an XM radio interview Roberts said he would be traveling to Dallas the last week of October and then would start to get to know the staffs' workout routine with the players and try to understand what they need.
James Neal completed his summer program to get results and now has more strength, and more importantly speed. Unable to spend gobs of money, GM Joe has hired the likes of Gary Roberts and Willie Desjardins as cheap back-channels that could really make an impact on this franchise for years to come even though they aren't high profile, on-ice moves.
From the Stars PR release...
"We’re very pleased to officially add Gary Roberts as a player development consultant for our hockey club," said Nieuwendyk. "Obviously I know Gary well and what he’s all about. He’s a first-class person and I think our young players will benefit from his years of experience."
Roberts will be working with the Stars’ young players throughout the club’s hockey system, at both the NHL and developmental levels, in tandem with the club’s strength and conditioning team, coaches and trainers.
"Gary had an illustrious career and went through a lot in his years in the NHL," said Nieuwendyk. "He overcame two neck surgeries and maintained his level of effort no matter what the circumstance. We feel that he will help our young players understand what it takes to be a true professional."
The Austin Statesman is running with the confusing headline "Texas Stars Open Season Tonight". Which is weird, because they opened their season a week ago. Either way, go get 'em boys! And enjoy Fabian Brunnstrom, eventually.
Brunnstrom will have to clear waivers by 11am today. Stay tuned here for the latest, but he is not expected to be claimed.
- We got a press release on the Stars ratings on FS SW last night...apparently the ratings were the best they've been in six years. The numbers themselves are...what's the opposite of extraordinary?
- Early Stars-Blues preview.
- Pro Hockey Talk (founded by Brandon Worley) asks if these 3-0 Dallas Stars are legit.
- The Dallas Stars do not believe they will hear from the front office on the Mark Fistric hit on Franzen.
- "Hicks has a mixed legacy among his American fanbase". <--- Understatement.
- The Ducks blew a 4-2 third period lead and lost in a shootout. Just thought you should know.