Dallas Stars fans were giddy when Radek Faksa, center from the Kitchener Rangers, dropped to number 13 on Friday night, and pleased when Ludwig (Ludvig?) Bystrom, projected by many as a late first rounder, fell into their laps in the second. The value in 4 of the first 61 picks and 9 picks overall apparently isn't lost on the national media either, as ESPN has given the Stars one of only five 'A' grades in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Czech-born forward Radek Faksa has a chance to play in the NHL next season. One of the smartest players in the draft, he can play both ends of the ice. Swedish defenseman Ludwig Bystrom and Canadian forward Mike Winther are solid prospects, as the Stars added nine players into their system.
Draft grades are silly, but the internet is a silly place. You'll notice we didn't ask you to grade the Stars' draft this year. Perhaps we'll put up a poll in 2016. "Grade the 2012 Dallas Stars Draft." I digress...
Nevertheless it's high praise from a sharp hockey mind in Craig Custance and we've seen the Stars draft referenced as being second to only the Montreal Candiens' haul this weekend in numerous Tweets and blogs. Given the controversy surrounding Nieuwendyk's first several offerings it's a breath of fresh air and encouragement.
We'll get a chance to see these draftees at development camp (July 5th - 12th in Frisco) and talk to them a bit, so we'll learn more then.
Links after the jump...
- Here's an amusing (or maybe not so much) look at the top 10 draft busts for the Stars organization (Minnesota and Dallas), including a reminder about the 2002 draft, which apart from Trevor Daley in the second round was a complete wash for the Stars, and that hurt them down the line as we saw. [Crashing The Net]
- Washington media and fans in general appear quite content with the Mike Ribeiro acquisition. Like it's something on a list waiting to be checked off for quite some time. A sure thing. This piece in the Washington Post brings up the amusing subject of who he'll distribute pucks to on their second line with the departure of Alex Semin. Wouldn't it be more than a little ironic if the Stars signed Semin? [Washington Post]
- George McPhee indicated that the Capitals have been after Ribeiro "for a while"... "I've been after this player for a while, so we got it done. We gave up a real good kid in Cody, who's going to play a long time in this league. But obviously, Ribeiro will come in and play much higher in our lineup right away." Makes you wonder what GM Joe might have asked them for previously. [Washington Post]
- I've never heard of ESPN Hockey Insider Grant Sonier, which is probably my fault, but this ESPN Dallas post indicates he feels that Radek Faksa could play in the NHL next season - One of only four players he categorizes thusly to go along with the first three players in the draft. [ESPN Dallas]
- Wouldn't it stink if you traded for Lubomir Visnovsky and then he thought about leaving for the KHL? [Puck Daddy]
- Wouldn't it be really, really weird if Roberto Luongo was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks? #ifyoucan'tbeatemjoinem [Pro Hockey Talk]
- Justin Schultz has not reached an agreement with the formerly mighty Ducks of Anaheim, and will reach free agency. He can only sign an entry level contract, so it's all about destination. It's believed he wants to play for a Canadian team, or otherwise at least a perennial contender.. [Pro Hockey Talk]
- The Red Wings are expected to be in on Parise and Suter. And the Penguins are expected to be in on Parise AND Suter. And the Rangers. And the Wild. No one ever mentions Dallas. [ESPN]
- If you buy this Steve Ott shirt your money will go to help some charity of something or something other. [Sports Chirps.com]
And no one seems to care that Mike Ribeiro's line is about to be targeted gleefully by every coach in the Eastern Conference as a defensive mismatch...