Jamie Benn says he trusts the process. The Dallas Stars captain came back from double hip surgery without missing a beat last season. And now, after core-muscle surgery in July, he appears ready once again to pick up where he left off.
Mike Heika of The Dallas Morning News talked to The Captain after last night’s home preseason victory over the Florida Panthers, in which he played for 19:38 minutes and earned an assist on Patrick Eaves’ tying goal in the third period:
Benn played his first preseason game Tuesday at American Airlines Center and is expected to play Friday at Las Vegas. That should be all the preparation he needs to get ready for the season opener Oct. 13.
"Everything has gone according to plan," Benn said.
Head coach Lindy Ruff thinks Benn is ready to meet a tough schedule and soaring expectations:
"I think that we did the right thing (last year). Hopefully, we did the right thing again," Ruff said. "He's a guy who can play through some discomfort, and some guys are better at that than others."
That said, Ruff has expectations for his captain and wasn't shy about establishing a fairly demanding schedule.
"We could have pushed a little harder a little sooner," Ruff said. "But there is no easing now. The word ease is out. Now we've got to go hard and be ready."
There’s more at Mike’s place. [SportsDayDFW]
Jamie also talked with the media about a few things he’d like the team to “clean up” during the last few preseason games:
And catch last night’s hightlight reel here:
Ruff talked to the media after last night’s victory:
Ruff mentioned Gemel Smith and Justin Dowling again after game. Both have done a nice job with added opportunities at center in preseason— Sean Shapiro (@seanshapiro) October 5, 2016
Antti Niemi had a very good night against the Panthers. Here he talks about his shootout save strategy:
Former Star Jason Demers wasn’t in the Panthers’ lineup last night, but he still made an impact.
And Tyler Seguin didn’t play, but he still made someone’s night with a surprise visit to new Dallas Stars Foundation grant recipients.
You know it’s a slow preseason when an away-jersey misunderstanding makes headlines. [USA Today]
Want to work for Tom Gaglardi – or, at least, one of his companies? The Stars’ owner is opening an outpost of his family’s flagship restaurant chain in The Crescent, and they’re holding a career fair today.
Antoine Roussel is bringing French style to a new campaign by made-in-USA menswear upstarts Mizzen+Main (which also makes its home in Dallas).
Look past the marquee names from the 2016 draft, and you’ll find that this year’s crop of NHL rookies is a big bucket of talent ready to make a splash, says Daniel J. Friedman. [Sports Illustrated]
Also in SI: The 2016-17 Western Conference is going to be another wild ride in which “everyone has a shot.” [SI]
Prospect hounds, rejoice: NHL Central Scouting has released its first watch list for the 2017 draft.
The Boston Bruins have been a down a young, high-end defenseman ever since trading Dougie Hamilton. Can they afford Jacob Trouba? [The Hockey Writers]
Luke Fox names six critical RFAs, from Nikita Kucherov to Rickard Rakell, who have until December 1 to sign new contracts. [Sportsnet]
Finally: Steve Ott and Dylan Larkin were in the penalty box together during Sunday’s Red Wings-Blackhawks game when they decided to give a four-year-old a nice surprise. It’s now the photobomb heard ’round the world. [NHL]