Dallas Stars fans have been stuck in a weird Erik Karlsson limbo in which what’s not happening has dominated the hockey conversation far more than what could happen. Mike Heika sought to remedy that just a little with a return to his #HeyHeika chat late last week.
For starters, he spent quite a bit of time discussing the Stars’ forward strength, and how likely it may be that they trade for an impact player such as Artemi Panarin or (his own submission) Matt Duchene:
What forwards do you think the Stars may be interested in, and have they spoken to teams about any of them?
As much as I know all of this talk has made fans hungry for a move, my guess is everything will slow down if Karlsson is traded someplace else. The Stars are open to a big move that will improve the team, but I don’t think they are just going to jump to the next guy. They feel they have a good enough roster that they can be patient. Trades happen all of the time, even during the season, so they are a team that wants to win now, but they know that whatever deal they make will need to be the right deal.
He also offered his HSO on whether then team should hang onto hot prospect Miro Heiskanen:
Hey Mike. Do you agree with the fact that I can’t see how DAL can pass on the opportunity of getting a player like Erik for a guy who hasn’t played a single NHL game? I know Miro’s got the potential to become a Karlsson type of player, but our window is now, and it’s closing fast
No, I disagree. There are prospects and then there are top-ranked prospects. Heiskanen has the ability to be a great player for the next 15-20 years. I think you have to protect that possibility even if the player coming to Dallas would be Erik Karlsson.
There’s more at Mike’s place. [Dallas Stars]
Because the Karlsson circus is still the biggest show in town...it doesn’t appear much has changed since this message dated Friday.
.@ErikKarlsson65 sweepstakes continue. The @TBLightning pulled ahead & by all accounts continue to lead. Former front runner @DallasStars seems to be losing ground. @GoldenKnights are waiting for an opening. While others are now joining the chase. Finish line may be a ways off— Gino Reda (@GinoRedaTSN) July 6, 2018
The NHL Network got in on the act with an impromptu Twitter poll.
Where would you like to see Erik Karlsson end up? pic.twitter.com/gRVh8f3oL8— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) July 8, 2018
But would the Stars do better to focus on a trade for a top-six forward like Jeff Skinner?
And speaking of Stars forwards – Valeri Nichushkin has yet to play a moment on his new contract, but already he’s a top 200 overall player according to NHL.com’s fantasy staff.
Meanwhile, everybody visit @tweetgrubes and wish the Stars’ one-of-a-kind DJ a happy birthday.
Around the League(s)
From Brian Boyle’s first goal with the New Jersey Devils to Bryan Bickell’s “One More Shift” with the Chicago Blackhawks, the NHL.com staff have assembled their most memorable moments of the 2017-18 season.
If you’re a grown adult and currently rending your garments and threatening to rage-quit because you bought a Jack Eichel No. 15 jersey, the Buffalo Sabres are offering a partial credit toward the purchase of a new sweater.
Those with long memories, and perhaps a folder full of Eichel JPGs, may remember that this isn’t even his first number change. Collect ’em all!
Jack Eichel's recent jersey # change wasn't his first. This was his original number in th 2015-16 pre-season. pic.twitter.com/cm5VK4V7UV— Matteo Fabrizi (@KidNHLAnalyst) July 8, 2018
The Vegas Golden Knights have signed their top-scoring defenseman, Colin Miller, to a four-year, $15.5 million contract.
“He is a young mobile defenseman with a great shot who contributed greatly to our team’s success. We are excited for his continued development over the next 4 years,” @GoldenKnights general manager George McPhee said of Colin Millerhttps://t.co/rxUNpqGHk5— Las Vegas RJ (@reviewjournal) July 8, 2018
The Detroit Red Wings have signed 2018 draftee Filip Zadina to a three-year entry-level contract, in what appears to be another usage of what we might call the Julius Honka Rule.
Red Wings announce signing of Filip Zadina to entry level deal. NHL rules that he was on loan to Halifax, so he can play in AHL next season if necessary.— Craig Custance (@CraigCustance) July 7, 2018
The Calgary Flames sent Johnny Gaudreau to this year’s Calgary Stampede, and they gave him a live mic. See, they can do something right.
Evgeni Malkin made a special trip to catch the Russia-Croatia quarterfinal in the 2018 World Cup – and he took his pals Ilya Kovalchuk and Alexander Radulov with him. Check out Rad’s Tyler Seguin logo hat, and enjoy.