The Dallas Stars have made the playoffs only twice in the past decade, and both times failed to make it past the second round. We could sit around and debate different reasons as to why four different coaches have failed to produce results for the team, but let’s cut to the chase and dive straight into perhaps the biggest issue — drafting.
Between 2008 and 2016 the Stars made nine first-round picks that since went on to play 662 NHL games by the conclusion of the 2017-18 season.
That’s an average of 73.6 games per first-rounder. The NHL average for that time was 209.91 games per first-rounder and the second-worst team, the Montreal Canadiens, were 52.5 games better with 126.1 games for their first-round picks.
That is, to put it kindly, not a very good return. Of course, you could blame the old regime for dragging the average down (thanks to picks like Scott Glennie and Jack Campbell), but even current General Manager Jim Nill has failed to make an impact in the first round:
Between 2013 and 2016, four drafts and first-round picks have averaged 101.95 games played. The Stars’ first-round picks during that time have averaged 52.6 career games, which ranks fourth-worst in the NHL. Realistically, it’s third-worst if you take into account that the New York Rangers had zero first-round picks during that time.
So who should the Stars have picked all of those years? Sean Shapiro goes through each first and second round pick of the Nill era and gives his take. [The Athletic]
More Stars News
Also from Shapiro — learn more about the Stars’ head coaching search, what to expect from Valeri Nichushkin, and more in his latest mailbag:
Does it make sense for Stars to trade picks in the coming draft for a young established player? What should next year's second line look like? Who will @ThreeTwoEephus' new favorite player be? All that, plus song suggestions for @tweetgrubes!https://t.co/WjnaRgxGwe— The Athletic (@TheAthleticDFW) April 19, 2018
Good news, everyone! The Texas Stars played their first playoff game last night against the Ontario Reign, and they won 4-3 in overtime! [100 Degree Hockey]
Here was the overtime winner, courtesy of Brian Flynn:
Around the League
On the bright side, that means the series is tied up 2-2, which means at least two more games!
A big part of that win was thanks to Tuukka Rask, who stopped 31 shots throughout the evening (what is with all the 3’s and 1’s from this game?):
Speaking of Boston, is Zdeno Chara becoming the new Jaromir Jagr? The veteran defenseman continues to perform remarkably despite being 41 years old. [The Hockey News]
The next time some fan complains about how their team can’t win due to badly-timed injuries, point them towards the Winnipeg Jets:
Scott Burnside sat down with ex-Stars defenseman Patrik Nemeth and talked about his journey from being waived by Dallas to playing top playoff minutes for Colorado. [The Athletic]
Sorry, everyone, there’s no Norris love for John Klingberg this year:
The Selke finalists are also out, and Jared Clinton breaks down the case for each of the top candidates. [The Hockey News]
The Las Vegas Golden Knights didn’t play last night, because they already swept the Los Angeles Kings. It’s officially time to stop trying to explain their success:
There is no good explanation for why the Vegas Golden Knights are this good so let’s stop dissecting them and see where this goes https://t.co/n5KeARDZNA— DL (@davelozo) April 19, 2018
The GoFundMe page for the Humboldt Broncos has officially ended, giving the victims and their families more than $15 million: