Tomorrow is the day Stars fans have had circled on their calendars ever since that 3-0 loss to the Detroit Red Wings to end the season on April 27th. It's draft day. A day of hope. A day of renewal. Something positive for a fan base that is always so desperate for good news.
The Stars have played things pretty close to the vest so far, with no one quite sure what the plan is. Will the Stars target defensive help? Center depth? Simply the best player available? Will they use some of their surplus selections to move up and take a blue chipper, or will they take their valuable 10th overall pick and trade down for more selections in what is a historically deep draft?
The beauty here is that the draft is so deep, and the Stars have so many prime selections, that it's going to be hard to screw this up. There are any number of prospects available tomorrow that would be an instant boon to the franchise, and that's exactly why the Stars put themselves in this position with their deadline dealing this year.
Sports Day DFW put together a neat little slideshow to act as a composite of sorts, detailing many of the Stars options, based on mock drafts from all over the web. [DMN]
On a larger scale, NHL Numbers has compiled most of the well respected mock drafts around the league and come up with their consensus Top 100 for tomorrow's draft. Coming in at the first spot? Dallas's own Seth Jones, whom the Colorado Avalanche insist they will not be selecting with the first overall pick. [NHL Numbers]
Speaking of Jones, the Dallas Morning News has a really great article about the young man, including some rare photos of him as a young kid in the Stars youth system. It seems no one has a single bad thing to say about the young man. [DMN]
Hockey's Future wrote a good piece on him as well this week, where he says he is taking being snubbed by the Avalanche in stride, and focusing only on the things that are within his control. Wherever he ends up, he will be doing North Texas proud. [HockeysFuture]
Down in the AHL, Texas Stars captain Maxime Fortunus is taking the same approach to his future with the Stars organization. His future still up in the air, he is remaining grounded and planning to do what is best for him and his family if he reaches unrestricted free agency. [Statesman.com]
Those hoping for a reunion tour of The Brad Richards Experience at American Airlines Center will have to wait for the New York Rangers to come to town. Richards, who was widely considered to be a buy-out candidate in New York, will not have his deal terminated after all. [NHL.com]
Brad Richards is staying with the Rangers organization, but Mark Messier is not. Messier, feeling snubbed by the Blueshirts after the Rangers hired Alain Vigneault as their new head coach, has decided to continue his managerial career elsewhere. [Associated Press]
The Carolina Hurricanes hold the 5th overall selection in tomorrow's Entry Draft, and they've been heavily linked to the big Russian forward Valeri Nichushkin. There is a lot to like about his game, and some consider him the top talent in the entire pool. [Bradenton.com]
For you video gamers out there that were interested in which player would grace the cover of EA Sports' annual hockey title next year, it's Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils. He beat out Sergei Bobrovsky for the honor, which is probably a good thing since EA Sports doesn't own a KHL license. Just in case. [IGN]
If you're like me, you're trying to find reasons to hate our new division rival, and defending Stanley Cup Champion, Chicago Blackhawks. They're making it really really hard to do, however. The Blackhawks purchased a full page ad in a Boston newspaper to thank the team, fans, and city for their hospitality and sportsmanship. That's class, folks. [Sports Illustrated]
Today's video, for all those nostalgia fiends about this time of year, is one of my earlier memories as a Dallas Stars fan. In 1995, the Dallas Stars made a very wise selection, in the general area of their current draft position. They selected Jarome Iginla from the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL with the 11th pick. They'd end up swapping that pick to Calgary for a Conn Smythe, Stanley Cup, and future General Manager.