The 2016-2017 Dallas Stars season was a bit of a bummer, especially the last couple months of it. As diehard fans, we still watched every game and followed the team, but the fire and excitement just wasn’t there.
It can be easy to forget that players might sometimes have these kind of feelings, too. That’s not to say that they ever give less than 100%, but I imagine it is a lot easier to get pumped up for a game when you’re fighting for the Presidents’ Trophy than it is when you are already eliminated from the playoffs. Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin spoke about this with Emily Kaplan during the NHL Media Tour in New York recently:
Seguin: I did lose focus and had to still find a way to compete. It was miserable, something you never want to go through. I mean, [I didn't] even like hockey.
Benn: When you get knocked out of the playoffs and are officially out, you\still have games that need to be played. It's about playing with pride and honor and representing your team and city well. It's not always the easiest thing, but it shows character and it shows a little bit about yourself.
The article isn’t all doom and gloom, though. Benn and Seguin also discuss their excitement for the year ahead, how the free agent signings this summer will help the team, and also get in some sweet zingers on Dirk Nowitzki, Jaromir Jagr, and each other. [ESPN]
Other Stars Stuff
Evidently Benn and Seguin only give quotes in tandem these days, as they discuss a new outlook for the season ahead in Elliot Friedman’s (now) 31 Thoughts. [Sports Net]
The boys in Victory Green are the first team highlighted in Justin Cuthbert’s piece about NHL Power Shifts (clever). I know they’re just words and the reason for a positive shift is because they were so bad last year, but it gives me warm fuzzies to read positive things about the Stars this time of the year. [Puck Daddy]
Today’s defining moment in Stars history: the hiring of Jim Nill.
From ending Dallas' five-year playoff drought to making some serious moves this summer, Jim Nill has set the Stars up for success. pic.twitter.com/UKBkEyR9uY— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) September 12, 2017
While it hasn’t been the rosiest of times in Traverse City, there have been a few bright spots. And hey, not last place is way better than last place, right?
I hope you’re thirsty! The Stars have announced a three-year partnership with Jamba Juice. [Seeking Alpha]
Mike Heika takes a crack at the five biggest storylines for the Stars heading into the season, including what everyone wants to know: how will the lines play out?
I know you've talked about this ad nauseam, but what are your latest thoughts on the whole second line center debacle with Spezza, Faksa and Hanzal?
Heika: Hitchcock said he wants to use Seguin-Benn, Faksa-Hanzal and Janmark-Spezza, so that will solve the problem for now. He said he needs to adjust the right wings and see if this alignment will work.
He seems to be way ahead of me on all of this. :)
Find the rest of the story at Mike’s place. [SportsDayDFW]
Around the League
Point: George Parros might be just who the NHL needs to really take charge of player safety.
Counterpoint: Maaaaybe not.
Ryan Lambert at Puck Daddy took his mail bag out of hibernation. This week’s edition discusses the Blues’ outlook, potential impact rookies, and the possibility that the Penguins could win the Stanley Cup again (no thanks). [Puck Daddy]
What started as a cool story envisioning what a hockey arena in Seattle might look like got very dark, very quick. [NBC Sports]
Sophmores are usually known for their slumps, but Jared Clinton takes a more positive outlook and highlights ten second-year players that are poised to make some noise. [Hockey News]
The New York Times has a cool piece about how the ice at MSG is made before the season. Biggest surprise? They listen to Marc Anthony to “keep things interesting.” [New York Times]