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Dallas Stars 2013-14 Season Grades: Chris Mueller

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Judge Chris Mueller's season as an injury fill-in with Dallas.

Ronald Martinez

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.

Regular season statistics:

GP G A Pts PIMs +/- TOI Corsi Rel OZ starts
9 0 0 0 0 -2 9:14 -0.4% 55.6%

Playoff statistics:

GP G A Pts PIMs +/- TOI Corsi Rel OZ starts
4 0 0 0 0 -2 6:28 -0.4% 63.2%

Key Stat9 games played - Mueller was not brought on to play a large role with the Stars this season - indeed, he was really brought in on a two-way contract so that the Stars had a slightly more NHL experienced option to turn to if and when injuries struck the forward corps. And he earned enough of the team's trust to get some valuable playing time even into the playoffs.

The Good: Mueller was exactly as advertised - a guy who could fill in competently on the lower lines when problems arose throughout the season. He was a good soldier as well, racking up frequent flier mile after frequent flier mile as the Stars struggled to ice 12 healthy forwards in the waning weeks of the season, and he's been a huge part of the Texas Stars very successful season. You always need decent options to rely on from your minor league club in the lower line roles, and Mueller accomplished his job as well as could be expected.

The Bad: As with any guy who is primarily a call up, Mueller had his moments to forget. Perhaps the worst of those came on the eventual series winning goal for the Anaheim Ducks, when he (along with several others) got caught in a bad positional snafu that allowed an easy look early in the overtime. He also put up no points and saw only low minutes in sheltered situations. While he was exactly what he was supposed to be, he also didn't bring anything extra that really warrants an extra look over some of the Stars more promising prospects.

Bottom Line: The life of a journeyman NHL player is a difficult one, but Mueller made the best of it he could this season with the Stars. He didn't bring anything special to the team, but he also solved exactly the sort of problems the Stars signed him to address. The sad thing is the lasting impression from his season will probably be a bad one because of the way the Stars lost with him on the ice in overtime. Still, that shouldn't overshadow what was a decent job by a guy who took on a difficult role with a high level of professionalism.

Vote now: Rate Mueller 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.