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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Finding A Future Star

The Stars play host for the NHL Draft, but they have other work to do this weekend. Plus, Barry Trotz to New York, the Ilya Kovalchuk stakes race, and more.

NHL: NHL Draft
The Stars won Miro Heiskanen in the lottery (literally). This year’s first pick will take a bit more work.
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Stars are hosting the first NHL Draft in Texas history this weekend. But they have work to do themselves, and a few things to prove regarding their ability to choose impact players. What should fans expect?

GM Jim Nill prefers to swing for the fences with his first-round picks, writes Gerry Fraley of The Dallas Morning News:

“You’re hoping to get someone who’s going to be a star,” Nill said Thursday evening. “You can always trade for or sign a depth player. We’re looking for a guy that can come in and make a difference.”

It’s true, more or less, that the team has a hill to climb this weekend. Nill’s previous drafts have been hit-and-miss, and passing on 2018 Calder Trophy winner Mathew Barzal in 2015 is a still-fresh wound for many fans and followers. What role could new head coach Jim Montgomery play in their drafting decisions?

Nill said there eight to 10 marquee players in this draft, but there will be a pool of appealing talent remaining when the Stars pick. The arrival of new coach Jim Montgomery from the University of Denver will give the Stars extra information, but they do not plan on loading up with college players.

Montgomery favors the same type of player that Nill wants.

”Guys who play fast and hard, good character players,” Nill said.

Gerry has more. [SportsDayDFW]


Draft Daze

If you didn’t get a chance to drop in at Dr Pepper StarCenter Farmers Branch yesterday, you can still enjoy this photo of Jamie Benn, Ben Bishop, and Tyler Seguin doing what they do.

North Texas’ own Blake Coleman, now a rising star with the New Jersey Devils, brought some hometown pride for kids who hope to follow in his footsteps.

Will the Stars continue to stabilize their goaltending pipeline at the draft? Josh Lile discusses some potential picks.

Here’s a first look at the floor, courtesy of Elliotte Friedman.

Sean Shapiro dives into the draft discussion in his latest mailbag.

The Montreal Canadiens are not good right now. Will GM Marc Bergevin – to be fair, a wellspring of much of that not-goodness – make a deal for another first-round pick?

And in non-draft news, the next deal for Valeri Nichushkin is all but done, reports Mark Stepneski.

Food for thought from Sean Shapiro. Discuss amongst yourselves.

Around the League(s)

Not yet “official,” yet still confirmed: Barry Trotz, who just guided the Washington Capitals to their first Stanley Cup, will be the New York Islanders’ next head coach. Will he be the secret sauce that seals a new deal for captain John Tavares? [New York Post]

For their part, the Caps appear ready to promote from within. Associate coach Todd Reirden will get an interview, says GM Brian MacLellan – but that could be a formality.

Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion spoke from Dallas yesterday on the Mike Hoffman trade. “[T]his wasn’t an indictment on [Hoffman]. This was just the direction that we needed to go.”

Meanwhile, the Sens still have to solve the Erik Karlsson equation. Ryan Rishaug, Darren Dreger, Pierre LeBrun, and Bob McKenzie gathered pre-draft to discuss the ins and outs of making a deal with — or for — the star defenseman. [TSN]

Is Slava Voynov on his way back to the NHL? Katie Strang runs through the maze of issues – legal, optical, and otherwise – that interested teams will have to consider.

Will Ilya Kovalchuk return to North America with the Boston Bruins? “He’s got things that he’s looking for and we’ll see where it goes,” says GM Don Sweeney.

The Boston Bruins may have to go through the Los Angeles Kings or San Jose Sharks to get him, though.

Finally...

Another Stars defenseman celebrates his birthday this week. Happy 33rd, Marc Methot – enjoy.