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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Jim Montgomery Gets Ready For The Big Time

The award-winning college and junior coach will jump to the NHL with help from Hitch. Plus, the Jets draw first blood, Finland shocks Canada, and the Calder Cup conference finals are set.

David Sherman Photography

Jim Montgomery has won consistently throughout his career as a college and juniors bench boss. But he has never coached a professional game. Can he bring his game to the next level for his biggest challenge yet – the Dallas Stars?

Montgomery’s best bet is to bring the skills that brought him into the conversation. And the former College Hockey News Coach of the Year got that advice from none other than Columbus Blue Jackets bench boss John Tortorella:

“He said there’s a reason that people want you right now, so don’t change a thing about how you do things,” Montgomery said. “Be who you are. That really resonated with me because I’m confident in how I’m able to get a group of people to play the same way and believe in how we’re doing it, and the trust that evolves from it. I’m not going to change who I am.”...

“The most important thing is you show the players that you’re prepared with your game plan, your video and your practices,” he said. “And that you invest in them. What I mean by investing in them is that it’s a working relationship together. They know I’m going to be firm and I’m going to be hard in certain areas, but I’m also going to let them have a voice in how we’re going to go about things. Because in today’s world you have to explain the why and how and it just makes sense to do that.”

He also says he’s already working with his predecessor and Stars consultant Ken Hitchcock. That should help Montgomery make the transition from college hockey to the NHL:

“I think we’re on the same page of how it would possibly work best,” Montgomery said. “We just have to finalize all that. Just have to make sure once I get my day-to-day staff in place that they’re comfortable with it and everyone in the organization would be comfortable. … For me, the way it would work best with [Hitchcock], is him and I are speaking a lot, but it’s him and I and he’s kind of mentoring me.”

Adam Kimelman has much more at the big-league site. [NHL]


More Stars

A revolutionary five-forward power play carried Finland as they shocked Canada 5-1 at the 2018 IIHF Worlds yesterday. Miro Heiskanen did what we might begin to refer to as “Miro Heiskanen things.” [IIHF]

You gotta do something while your team isn’t playing, and @DallasStars seems to be testing something. Maybe it’s a teaser for some sort of dog-themed activity, or maybe they’re just trying to find out whether you’re paying attention....

Around the League(s): Conference Finals Edition

All that regular-season #MDK-ing can either toughen up or tire out a team. For the Winnipeg Jets, it seems to be the former – just two days after a grueling seven-game series with the Nashville Predators, they drew first blood against the Vegas Golden Knights 4-2.

Do the Jets have the loudest barn in the league? Discuss.

The Washington Capitals-Tampa Bay Lightning series returns tonight at 7 p.m. CDT. The Bolts will be seeking revenge for a Game 1 loss, and Dan Rosen talked with superstar RW Nikita Kucherov about how it could play out.

With Nashville eliminated from the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs, Mike Fisher has announced his retirement, again.

Will the Preds deal Pekka Rinne after a season that should win him a Vezina Trophy? Matt Larkin writes about why and how it could happen.

The NWHL is making a big announcement this Tuesday in St. Paul. It’s about “professional women’s hockey in Minnesota.” You can probably see where this is going.

And 20 First Nations hockey teams are honing their skills and celebrating their cultures at the 2018 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships in Membertou, Nova Scotia.

Greetings From Scenic Cedar Park: The March Continues

The Texas Stars will open the next phase of their 2018 playoffs campaign at home. The Western Conference Finals begin Friday, May 18 against the Rockford IceHogs (Chicago Blackhawks).

With the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (Philadelphia Flyers) advancing in the East, the AHL has the schedule for the Calder Cup final four all locked up.

Goalie Mike McKenna’s star (Star?) power is being put to good use. The auction of his Pink in the Rink Springfield Thunderbirds sweater will benefit the Cleveland Clinic, in memory of New York Islanders legend Bill Torrey.

Ringo the Ringtail brings you the Infinity War reference you didn’t know you needed until just now.

Finally

For your Mother’s Day lulz, here’s a flashback to 2015 – and the prank Heather Benn and Jackie Seguin pulled as revenge for the notorious Valentine’s Day prank Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin pulled on them. A thing of beauty is a joy forever. Enjoy.