In a draft that where no one seems to know what’s going on after the first two picks, there’s no telling who might be available when the Dallas Stars pick at No. 13 overall. For instance, rather than go for one of the typical suspects — Joe Veleno, Barrett Hayton, or Joel Farabee — the Stars could reach a little bit and go for Finnish center, Rasmus Kupari:
Kupari started the year with seven points (two goals, five assists) in four games at the Ivan Hlinka tournament, and then tallied 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in 39 games for Karpat. He looked over his head at times playing against men, but is expected to catch up quickly. He will probably need at least one more season in Finland, so a team drafting him will know that.
The Stars could also try to trade up to nab one of the top forwards in case they fall, such as American right winger Oliver Wahlstrom:
It’s probably unlikely Wahlstrom would fall to the Stars -- and there is a chance that he actually gets taken much higher -- but if Dallas wanted to move up and didn’t want to pay an exorbitant price, it might be able to nab Wahlstrom.
The big winger from Maine has great hands, and he has one of the best shots in the draft. He had 94 points (48 goals, 46 assists) in 62 games playing for USA’s Under-18 team. He is scheduled to attend Boston College, so he will have more time to develop.
You can read more about potential draft picks in Mike Heika’s piece here.
More Stars Stories
Paul Stastny was rumored to be a top Free Agent target for the Stars years ago. Could he actually land in Dallas this time around?
There’s a long relationship in Dallas between Jim Montgomery and Paul Stastny. #Stars likely need to move a center this weekend to create space— Andy Strickland (@andystrickland) June 19, 2018
Will you be in Dallas this weekend for the draft? Here are some wise words from some former Stars on what to do while here:
Ever wonder what Tyler Seguin does when he’s not playing hockey? Let’s check in on the man himself as he enjoys the offseason:
What’s the offseason like for @tseguinofficial? There’s a lot of fishing involved. We take a trip to his Ontario cottage in today’s "Back Home" presented by Kia.— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) June 19, 2018
Everyone loves Trading
Two different trades transpired yesterday, both involving the same player: Mike Hoffman, who is currently in the middle of a scandal involving his longtime girlfriend and the wife of former teammate Erik Karlsson.
TRADE: The #Sens have acquired forward Mikkel Boedker, defenceman Julius Bergman and a sixth-round choice in the 2020 NHL Draft from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Mike Hoffman, Cody Donaghy and Ottawa’s fifth-round pick in 2020: https://t.co/5LnYzNZv6Q— Ottawa Senators (@Senators) June 19, 2018
Less than a couple hours later, Hoffman was then flipped by the Sharks to the Florida Panthers for draft picks:
SECOND TRADE:— San Jose Sharks PR (@SanJoseSharksPR) June 19, 2018
⬅️to Florida Panthers:
-F Mike Hoffman
-7th Rd selection (207th) in 2018 Draft
-2nd Rd selection in 2019 Draft
-4th Rd selection (123rd) in 2018 Draft
-5th Rd selection (139th) in 2018 Draft#SJSharks #NHL
The Panthers are excited about what Hoffman brings to their team, and are willing to give the forward a “clean slate.” [NBC Sports]
The Sharks, meanwhile, made off pretty well for essentially serving as a middle-man:
Pretty good day for Doug Wilson. He gets rid of Mikkel Boedker and trades a 6th round pick in exchange for a 2nd, a 4th and two 5th round picks, plus $4 million in cap space and $6 million in real salary savings. #sjsharks— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) June 19, 2018
The trades stopped there, but rumors didn’t. Elliotte Friedman broke Twitter with the following concerning Columbus Blue Jackets forward Artemi Panarin:
There is word today that Artemi Panarin has told CLB that he is not ready to consider an extension “at this time.” (UFA July 2019.) As a result, the Blue Jackets are testing the market for him.— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 19, 2018
Columbus, however, maintains that they still plan to lock up Panarin long term, and will remain patient for the time being. [NHL]
I’m still not done on the trade rumors front. The Philadelphia Flyers also seem to be shopping winger Wayne Simmonds:
And of course there are players who likely would be traded if it weren’t for that pesky salary cap. [The Hockey News]
Other League News
Scouting guru Corey Pronman released his mock draft, and I think most people will be happy with his selection for the Stars:
Everyone thought the Washington Capitals’ Stanley Cup “window” was all but closed, yet they won it all anyways. Are there any teams who could surprise everyone with a championship sometime soon? [Sportsnet]
Here’s details on the heartwarming thing the NHL is doing for Humboldt this summer: