The Dallas Stars have confirmed that the team has come to an agreement with the Minnesota Wild to acquire Eric Nystrom. Nystrom cleared re-entry waivers yesterday for the Wild, who also needed to make a roster move. Nystrom is under contract through next season at $1.4 million a season and is known mainly for his physical and aggressive play.
Nystrom was initially placed on waivers by the Wild after not making the team out of training camp, and was then assigned to the Houston Aeros of the AHL. The Stars were hesitant to make a roster move last week because of injury considerations but seeing the necessity existed to acquire a player with significant salary, trading for Nystrom makes sense.
With the Wild trying to ease themselves of his $1.4 million salary, Nystrom was placed on re-entry waivers yesterday in the hopes of being on the hook for just half the cap hit. No team bit, and now it seems that for "future considerations", the Wild are more than happy to hand over Nystrom and his salary.
More thoughts on Nystrom and what it means for the Stars after the jump...
Along with the announcement of the trade, the Dallas Stars have assigned Tomas Vincour to the AHL. Vincour was impressive out of camp and there was a wave of excitement building for the young forward, but he struggled in the first few games of the season and was demoted to the fourth line against Phoenix, getting just four minutes of ice time.
While we're frustrated that Vincour is the unintended victim of circumstance, it seems that it's best for him to go to the AHL and get some things figured out while he still can. He is becoming a big part of the future of this franchise and he needs top minutes and experience right now, not to be a healthy scratch every other day.
As far as Eric Nystrom goes, his $1.4 million was needed to help get the Stars back above the floor. With Vincour being the player to be sent to the AHL when a roster move was made, the Stars were going to be roughly $1.2 million under the cap floor. For those wondering, this is why picking him up on re-entry waivers would not have made sense -- half the salary wasn't enough. The Stars also will likely never lose anything in this trade; "future considerations" is the official way of saying "we give him to you for free."
Nystrom is a high-character, hard working player who is physical and aggressive as a fourth line guy. He's much more than a "goon" and is more effective than a guy like Eric Godard whose sole job in the NHL is to fight. He'll never put up big numbers (51 points in 256 games), but he'll provide good physicality and energy on the fourth line.
Yesterday we speculated about a number of players the Stars could target but it seems the team wasn't interested in pulling an aging veteran off the street and paying him more what needed to be paid. It's doubtful that any player signed would have the offensive impact everyone was hoping for, so getting a player still in the NHL (technically) makes sense.
Nystrom won't impress you much with the puck but he's a great guy to have in the locker room and he's a fan favorite wherever he goes. All in all, not a bad "trade" to make in order to solve the salary cap issue that Sean Avery has once again caused this team.
I wish I could be in the locker room when Mark Fistric and Nystrom first shake hands.