With the regular-season opener against the Chicago Blackhawks less than a week away, the Dallas Stars have reached that point of training camp where the front office must decide which players will start the season with the big club.
There are currently 32 players on the NHL camp roster, but new coach Glen Gulutzan told ESPN Dallas he expects to make another large round of cuts today.
"We’ll get most of our roster down tomorrow (Sunday)," Gulutzan said. "Then we’ll see what our health is Monday and we may have to trim it one more time."
That particular phrasing suggests, at least to me, that the Stars will cut the roster down but keep 1-2 extra healthy bodies to hedge their bets with some injuries, likely the knee injury to Brenden Morrow and the groin injuries to Adam Burish and Jamie Benn, though all three have been practicing. Given current CBA rules, they will also have to keep Scott Glennie on the NHL roster until he recovers from his concussion, though he can be placed on injured reserve and not count against the 23-man limit.
So while many of the obvious candidates, such as Francis Wathier, Maxime Fortunus and Travis Morin might be headed to the Texas Stars of the AHL today, we might not have resolution to the 23rd-spot question until a little later in the week. Home-grown prospects Tomas Vincour and Colton Sceviour and new signee Eric Godard are the likely candidates for that position.
After the jump, more on the Stars 4-0 victory over the St. Louis Blues in the final preseason game, Vincour now has a countryman on the club for him to look up to and Patrick Sharp is continuing to push to be ready for the season opener in Dallas.
- With a little thing called the Major League Baseball playoffs going on in St. Louis, it seems like the preseason game got about as much attention in Missouri as it did in Texas - almost none. Here's the best local article I can find about the game. [Belleville News Democrat]
- Barring that, all we've got is the usual quick and dirty Associated Press recap. [DallasNews.com]
- This is a very short article without a lot of new information about the game, but check it out for the picture. One, we know B.J. Crombeen broke his scapula (otherwise known as a shoulder blade) during the game, and now we know the big, hulking reason why. And two, who is that big, hulking player again, photo caption? [Missourinet.com]
- One of the Stars scorers in that game was Tomas Vincour, who is one of three likely candidates for the final forward spot on the roster. This article talks about how far he's come since joining the organization and how he has a fellow Czech on the roster, Radek Dvorak, to serve as a mentor now. [ESPN Dallas]
- A national preview article that mentions Jamie Benn? I'm shocked. It's actually a pretty comprehensive look at the team's changes with a couple nice quotes from the AP. [Washington Post]
- The Morning News' paywall story is about how general manager Joe Nieuwendyk is forming a new core for this team, even if that meant some very tough personnel decisions along the way. [DallasNews.com]
- There's been a lot of talk about Stars prospect Jamison Oleksiak's decision to leave college for major junior after his freshman season at Northeastern University. Sportsnet caught up with him to talk about the decision and how he's fitting in to the OHL so far. [Sportsnet.ca]
- Scouting the enemy: Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp is trying to prove to his coaching staff that he will be ready for Friday's game against the Stars after undergoing an emergency appendectomy at the beginning of training camp. [Chicago Tribune]
- The Shanaban-hammer (Shanahammer? Just Shanaban? There are so many good options) is about to strike again. In addition to handing down a two-game suspension to Toronto Maple Leafs forward Clarke MacArthur for a check to the head of Detroit Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader, he likely has another player in his sights after Saturday's games. Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Malone leveled Montreal Canadiens defenseman Chris Campoli with a shoulder to the chin in the third period of the game Saturday. You'd think after eight suspensions, players would start to understand head-high hits are a no-no. [Puck Daddy/Tampa Tribune]