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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Kevin Connauton Proving He Belongs

A glut of young defensemen on the doorstep of the NHL, still can't let go of the brawl in Toronto, and are we jaded on outdoor games already?

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

We spoke of Jamie Oleksiak yesterday, and his improved chances of cracking the opening night roster. Well the same can be said for Kevin Connauton. Connauton was a 3rd round pick by Vancouver in 2009 and came to Dallas at the end of last season in the trade that sent Derek Roy to the Canucks. After a strong finish with the Texas Stars last spring, Connauton came into training camp with the potential to be rewarded for a strong showing with a roster spot. His game trends towards being an offensive threat from the blueline, but there are still question marks surrounding his defensive game.

"It's been a process the last three years and it's been making my game more all-around. I've got to make sure that I play to my strengths, which is the offensive side. I've got to be steady in my own zone, and I feel night and day more comfortable than when I first started playing in the AHL. I think I've made good progress, and it's just a matter of learning new things every day and coming to the rink with a purpose." [Stars Inside Edge]

With Trevor Daley likely to miss a few games, and Aaron Rome yet to play, it looks likely that Connauton will at least open the season in Dallas. But for a young defenseman still learning his role, it could be argued that his development would see a greater benefit from more ice time in the AHL. Yet another question to be answered in the upcoming weeks.

* * *

Good news is that Trevor Daley's injury is unrelated to his neck surgery over the summer. The most interesting part of the article though is the end. Apparently Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin are gonna pull a 'Stuck On You' and team up to throw out the first pitch at a Rangers game. Somebody please watch that and tell me it's not as strange as it sounds. [Sports Day DFW]

Puck Daddy's always entertaining rundown of the weekend's events, which in this case means griping about the preponderance of outdoor games this season. I don't know if six counts as a preponderance, but they really made it seem like it. [Puck Daddy]

Can't get enough of the Leafs/Sabres brawl the other night? Neither can I. The comedy value is far too great. Blow by blow account here, in case you wanted to know what was really going on. [Grantland]

And here are reactions from Don Cherry and others to Fight Night in Toronto. [Montreal Gazette]

I'm still always intrigued by these conference standings predictions. Stars projected to finish 4th in the Central, behind the Jets? [Lethbridge Herald]

A series of what-ifs and suppositions about every NHL team. Ultimately useless, but entertaining. That's life. [Sporting Charts]

Brenden Morrow with a few nice things to say about his new employer. Traitor. [ProHockeyTalk]

And we're going to end on a sobering note today. A story about the Minnesota Wild's Jake Dowell and his family's ongoing battle with Huntington's disease. [Star Tribune]