Once again it's that time of year here on Defending Big D where we take a look at each player that suited up for 20 or more games this season (and finished the season with the team) - and take a look back at their season. What was good about it, what wasn't so good, and the lasting impression they left us as we go into summer.
Key Stat: 2
Brenden Dillon inexplicably had two shorthanded goals in his second NHL season. He shared the team lead in shorthanded goals with Ryan Garbutt. Ryan McDonagh of the New York Rangers had three short handed goals to lead NHL defensemen. Dillon was the only other defender with more than one.
Dillon improved on his rookie season by continuing to work successfully in a defensive minded role under new coach Lindy Ruff. He had the highest Quality of Competition of any Stars blueliner and the lowest percentage of zone starts. Most of his season was played without Stephane Robidas. There was no significant change in his underlying numbers after the injury that took Robidas out of the lineup.. He was basically the same steady player regardless of where he was used.
There was nothing really bad about his season. He made the occasional error, but he's young. He was used in a tough role, but not in the minutes of a star shutdown player. His offensive output improved, but it could get better. Basically he's still young and improving. There are any number of areas where we can expect him to improve as he matures.
He should be a big part of this team going forward. The former undrafted free agent has been a godsend to a franchise that desperately just needed bodies to play defense as recently as last year. He's much more than just a body, and his second NHL campaign was overall a success.
Vote now: Rate Brenden on a scale of A to F (A being the best of course) based on his performance relative to his potential and your expectations for the season.