2014 NHL Draft: A Dallas Stars Preview

A preview of the 2014 NHL Draft for the Dallas Stars.

In less than a week the 2014 NHL Draft will begin. Names will be called. Trades will be made. A new cohort of prospects will join the Dallas Stars, barring Jim Nill trading all the picks.

In recent years the Dallas Stars have been building up the number of picks they have each year and this has led to a resurgence in talent within the organisation's prospect pool. The Dallas Stars have selected 18 prospects in the past two drafts, compared to 16 in the three before then. It's this focus that has put the Dallas Stars prospect pool among the top 10 in the NHL.

In the past two years the Dallas Stars have had nine picks in each draft. This year (currently) it's nine again. This is the first draft that Jim Nill will truly have his fingerprints all over. Yes, he was General Manager for the last draft but he hadn't spent the year in charge leading up to it and he didn't have his former scouts from Detroit with him. This draft he's been with the organisation for the entire season. He has had his guys from Detroit join the Star's scouting staff. This will be his draft.

Will this change the way the Stars have drafted in previous years? Probably not in any significant way. We will just have to wait and see if there is a huge change in direction from previous years.

So firstly here is a review of the Dallas Stars picks in the 2014 NHL Draft. They have their picks in all the seven rounds and extra picks in the fourth and sixth rounds.

Round Pick Number Team How did they the pick
1 14 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
2 45 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
3 75 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
4 105 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
4 115 Anaheim Ducks Traded in exchange for Stephane Robidas
5 135 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
6 154 Calgary Flames Traded in exchange for Lane MacDermid
6 165 Dallas Stars Owned Originally
7 195 Dallas Stars Owned Originally

So what do the Dallas Stars want from the draft? Where are they weak? In reality the Dallas Stars prospect pool is well stocked with good talent. There isn't a lot of elite level talent but quite a bit of good talent.

The Stars have managed to build up an impressive pool of prospect defenseman, and have some very interesting forward prospects as well, though they have no prospects on the right wing in the juniors. I imagine they might draft a few players who can play on that wing to make sure that there are prospects in the pipeline.

In the net the Stars are woefully short of talent once you get past Jack Campbell and Philippe Desrosiers. I think the Stars will be drafting a goaltender a year, at least, for a little while to build up the depth at the position. Having too many goaltenders is far better than having too few.

Heres what the Dallas Stars prospect system looks like at the moment, the positions I've listed them are what their team/league website have them listed as.

Goaltender Defense Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Jack Campbell Ludwig Bystrom Jason Dickinson Justin Dowling Scott Glennie
Philippe Desrosiers Kevin Connauton Remi Elie Radek Faksa Brett Ritchie
Henri Kiviaho Cameron Gaunce Alex Guptill Emil Molin Matej Stransky
Maxime Lagace Niklas Hansson Matej Paulovic Nick Paul Branden Troock
Jyrki Jokipakka Cole Ully Taylor Peters
John Klingberg Devin Shore
Esa Lindell Gemel Smith
Aleksi Makela
Patrick Nemeth
Jamie Oleksiak
Dmitry Sinitsyn
Troy Vance

With the first round being so forward heavy it's almost certain that the Dallas Stars will select a forward at 14, if they still have that pick. It's almost certain that the forward prospects will be bolstered by the selection of a top level forward. The players most likely to be available appear to be wingers though its possible a center drops to the Stars.

The rest of the draft beyond then is almost unpredictable, especially with the talent level remaining reasonably steady between 12-50. I don't think there will be any particular emphasis on position using the picks though the Stars will draft at least one goaltender. Beyond that the Stars will follow the best player available strategy instead of using the shotgun draft style they have done in the past.

It's a strange, but exciting, one because we don't know how Jim Nill will handle this draft. The previous drafts were done under other scouting staff and another GM. This is the first true Nill draft. I for one can't wait.