I have posted on this site a couple of times and my emotions have ranged from hopeful to downtrodden. I live my life as a pretty even keel person but for some reason the Stars truly get me going in a positive sense and in the negative. I feel like a teenager that is learning how to be in a relationship for the firs time. The ups and the downs we all have gone through. People will always say you cannot get to high and you cannot get to low, however I have seemed to miss that lesson when it comes to the Stars.
Since the trade deadline I have been thinking about the trades that have been made while watching our new young team find the chemistry and grit they have seemed to lack for most of the season. It is amazing to me to think what a few trades can do for a team when it comes to chemistry, pressure and expectations. Here are my thoughts about the trades and what they mean for the team.
As we have all read and discussed on this site I believe the Morrow trade brought us another Morrow that has tremendous upside as long as we give him time to develop and it seems like the organization is willing to do that. The Derek Roy deal may be my favorite trade of the deadline moves. I believe that Roy is overvalued by a lot of teams and the way that he played while with the Stars showed me that we should not re-sign him as our second line center even if he wanted to stay. Roy got pushed off the puck way to much for a second line center and even though he brought a ton of talent and much needed face-off wins to the team I didn't see him worth the financial investment that he obviously wants. The Stars received Kevin Connauton and a second round pick for Roy and I believe Connauton can be a solid piece in the defensive core in a couple of years, plus in a deep draft a second round pick can never hurt, just look at Alex Chiasson. Then there is the Jagr deal where a lot of people did not like the return and thought that we could have done better. I tend to agree with them. However, Lane Macdermid has shown exactly why we have to give these new guys a shot before we limit them to the third or fourth line, no matter what the scouting web sites say. Finally, trading Vincour was another solid move because the Stars soured on him and we got another talented defenseman in Cameron Gaunce. Personally, I cannot wait to see these guys in camp next season. The battle for NHL roster spots is going to be intense and fantastic to watch.
Its amazing how different the mentality is for the Stars after a couple of trades. The Stars finally have the "jump" to be a pain for every team they face. They are playing with vigor and a reckless abandon that their age suggests should happen. It feels like a massive weight has been lifted off of their shoulders and someone told them to just go play. The Stars traded three major pieces off of their roster and have replaced them with Lane Macdermid (while he wasn't coughing up blood), Alex Chiasson and Matt Fraser who look like they have been shot out of a cannon every time they hit the ice. I watched Chiasson and Fraser last night and both look like they have started to settle in nicely with this team. This team is flat out hustling their way to wins and it seems like the Stars skating has gone to a different level since they traded the Morrow, Jagr, and Roy.
Now I am going to try and contain my excitement because typically I tend to get punched right in the face every time I get my hopes up. The way the Stars are playing they have a chance of making it into the playoffs. They have a tough road ahead and that is an understatement. On the road against Nashville, Chicago, St. Louis, LA, and San Jose, then at home against San Jose, Vancouver, Columbus, and Detroit. Ouch. This team most likely will have win six of those games to make it and I truly think they are capable they way they played last night. I am hopeful for the playoffs this season, however what gets me fired up is this team having a full off-season to address needs and a full training camp to improve. I am a fan of the way this team is being built and I feel that the organization has an eye on the future. Even with this optimism I still feel that Glen Gulutzan will not return as the head coach but I do feel that GM Joe will get another year to let his roster moves take hold. The future is bright, and as much as the people commenting on the Stars Facebook status' will make you think the Stars gave up on the season, there is team that has won three games in a row and is two points out of the eighth spot.