Mired in a four-game losing streak, the Dallas Stars made some fairly significant changes to their roster Wednesday afternoon.
Dallas recalled defenseman Jamie Oleksiak and forward Antoine Roussel from the Texas Stars and sent Reilly Smith to the AHL.
The Smith move was first reported by Hundred Degree Hockey, and the promotions were confirmed by Mark Stepneski of the Stars.
The Dallas Stars have recalled Jamie Oleksiak & Antoine Roussel from AHL. Reilly Smith sent back to AHL.— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) January 30, 2013
Oleksiak, a 6-foot-7, 254 pound defenseman, was the Stars first-round pick, 14th overall, in the 2011 entry draft. He recently represented Texas in the AHL All-Star game and has 3 goals and 20 assists with a +12 rating in 43 AHL games this season.
Smith has played in six games for the Stars this season after making his NHL debut late last year. He's created several solid scoring chances but been unable to cash in, posting three shots, two penalty minutes and a -1 rating. He was recently a healthy scratch for the Stars loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
His adjustment to AHL hockey has been much smoother. In 37 games in Austin, Reilly Smith scored 11 goals with 14 assists, good for second on the team in points behind Matt Fraser, and he is still tied for third on the team in goals.
Antoine Roussel spent a portion of training camp with Dallas after being signed as an undrafted free agent this summer. He is seventh on the Texas Stars with 19 points.
The moves leave the Stars with eight defensemen and 14 forwards on the roster with center Derek Roy still on injured reserve. The Stars next game is Friday against the Phoenix Coyotes.
Mike Heika caught up with general manager Joe Nieuwendyk about the moves. The Stars general manager said Oleksiak is expected to make his NHL debut Friday and will join the team on the ensuing three-game road trip.
"We’ll see what he can do, and then we’ll assess from there," Nieuwendyk said.
For the full remarks, check out Heika's story.
Official release is below...
FRISCO, Texas - The Dallas Stars announced today that they have recalled defenseman Jamie Oleksiak, and forward Antoine Roussel from the Texas Stars, Dallas' development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). The team also announced that they have assigned Reilly Smith to Texas.
Oleksiak, 20, leads all Texas Stars defensemen in scoring with 23 points (3G-20A)in 43 contests this season. He recently played in the AHL All-Star Game in Providence, R.I. where he earned the game-winning assist and a plus-3 rating in the contest. The 6-foot-7, 254-pound defenseman was Dallas' first-round selection (14th overall) in 2011. Should Oleksiak make his NHL debut while being called up, he will be one of seven players in the League listed at 6-foot-7 or taller.
Roussel, 23, ranks seventh on the Texas Stars in scoring with 19 points (8G-11A) and leads the team with 103 penalty minutes. The Roubaix, France native is looking to make his NHL debut and become the eighth French-born player to skate in an NHL contest. Roussel, was undrafted and signed by Dallas as a free agent on July 2, 2012.
Smith, 21, has gone scoreless in six games for Dallas this season and is still looking to earn his first career NHL point. Prior to being recalled by Dallas, Smith skated for the Texas Stars where he currently ranks second on the team in scoring with 25 points (11G-14A) in 37 contests this season. The Toronto, Ont., native was Dallas' third-round selection (69th overall) in 2009.
The Dallas Stars faceoff against the Phoenix Coyotes this Friday, Feb. 1 at 7:30 pm (TV: FOX Sports Southwest PLUS; Radio: 1310 The Ticket).