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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Countdown to D-Day

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NHL draft season is upon us, and the information firehose is about to reach full blast. Plus, Québec City's serious new arena, and (possibly) the best draft prospect no one is talking about.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

With the Stanley Cup finals well and truly over and the NHL draft one week away, we're experiencing one last firehose blast of big, exciting hockey news before the long summer dry spell begins.

Much of that torrent of information will be provided by the Dallas Stars themselves. Their 2015 #StarsDraft Roundtable launched yesterday with a summary of team needs and how the organization might plan to meet them. Gather 'round as Mike Heika, Josh Bogorad, Bruce LeVine and Owen Newkirk hold forth:

A few takeaways from their discussion:

  • The Stars have enough organizational depth that they now can feel free to take the best available player — whomever they decide that may be.
  • Don't expect Jim Nill to trade picks for players, or vice versa. The Roundtable brain trust believes he'll prefer to restock the system with prospects who could possibly turn into trade pieces later.
  • Free agency is still one of the better options for addressing the team's most urgent needs. Don't be surprised if the Stars see some action there.

Here's a link if you prefer to watch the video in a new window. Enjoy. [Dallas Stars]

The Stars have also launched a new portal for all your Dallas draft news, with a nice mnemonic name: DallasStars.com/Draft. Check out the Draft Tracker, which lets you sort picks by team, position, draft year and more.

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It's Friday, so let's declare it A Day Without Blackhawks Photos. You're welcome.

One last thing from the Stanley Cup finals: Josh Cooper reckons Chicago fans won the jersey fouls championship during the 2015 playoffs. Enter if you dare! [Puck Daddy]

And a last word from one BFF to another:

Mike Heika isn't letting his career as a video star slow down his writing pace. Here he ranks Jamie Benn among the five best wingers in hockey. The scary part — for other teams — is that a Jamie Benn with healthy hips will actually have room to improve. [SportsDayDFW]

Heika also offers his opinion on where Tyler Seguin ranks among the league's best centers — another score that stands to rise as Segs continues to recover from the knee injury that cost him 10 games last spring. [SportsDayDFW]

At least one report says that the Dallas Stars have expressed interest in New York Rangers backup goalie Cam Talbot. They must have read Wes Lawrence's article. [The Score]

The Texas Stars are gearing up for next season, too. First in a new series on Players to Watch in 2015-16: Julius Honka. The youngest player in franchise history will be 19 when the new season starts and is likely once again to be the only teenager suiting up with the team. (Fun fact: 19 is also the number of points Honka tallied in the last 29 games of his rookie year.) [Texas Stars]

This week marked the one-year anniversary of the Cedar Park squad's Calder Cup victory, and Sean Shapiro details the ways in which the big club is reaping the benefits today. [Wrong Side of the Red Line]

And look what DBD's Josh Lile found on eBay: Someone is selling Calder Cup insta-legend Patrik Nemeth's autographed game-worn jersey from the finals. (Wow, the #SwedishMurderMachine is everywhere this week.)

The Stars' ECHL affiliate, the Idaho Steelheads, has announced the team's 2015-16 schedule. The season opens on home ice in Boise Friday, October 16 against the Rapid City Rush (unaffiliated). [Idaho Steelheads]

The slow-motion train wreck that is the Glendale Saga got even more wrecked up on Wednesday, as the city asked the Maricopa County Superior Court for permission to skip a $3.75 million fourth-quarter payment due to the Arizona Coyotes on July 1. The article also features a handy interactive timeline, effectively showing you the train wreck in a time-lapse version. [The Arizona Republic]

Meanwhile, Québec City wants to be your next NHL destination. Tim Newcomb takes a long, steamy gawk at the gorgeous Centre Vidéotron: purpose-built for professional hockey and opening in September 2015. [Sports Illustrated]

Elsewhere in SI, the magazine waxes nostalgic as the generational coronations of Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel grow ever closer. Check out this repost of an October 10, 2003 article on the last Next One, a teenage Sidney Crosby. [Sports Illustrated]

Who's the best draft-eligible player no one's talking about? Ross Bonander of The Hockey Writers looked for the answer and thinks he found it in a left-shot defensemen from Rouyn-Noranda. [The Hockey Writers]

Remember when the Colorado Avalanche was rumored to be "listening to offers" for Ryan O'Reilly? Yeah, well, that was Monday. Avs GM Joe Sakic called O'Reilly "part of our core" and said he is seeking a long-term deal with the 24-year-old center. [SportsNet]

The Minnesota Wild have placed forward Matt Cooke on waivers with the intention of buying out the remaining year of his contract. I'll just leave this here. [The Score]

Finally, have you met @LordStanley on Twitter? You should.