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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Thomas Harley Goes To The Front Of The (Blue) Line

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The Stars’ newest defender instantly becomes their top D prospect. Plus, the first-round party for the U.S. national program, a history of late-draft diamonds, and more.

2019 NHL Draft - Portraits Photo by Kevin Light/Getty Images

In case you missed last night’s NHL Draft action, the Dallas Stars kept it on the board and drafted for need with the selection of left-handed defender Thomas Harley.

Matthew DeFranks broke down the pick and its significance for The Dallas Morning News:

Harley, 17, is an above-average skater that likes to join the rush, and nearly quadrupled his point production this season in the OHL from his debut in 2017-18. OHL coaches named Harley the Eastern Conference’s most improved player, the best offensive defenseman and second-best skater.

Not including [Miro] Heiskanen at No. 3 two years ago, Harley’s selection at No. 18 was the highest pick the Stars used on a defenseman since they picked Julius Honka at No. 14 in 2014. Harley will instantly become the most promising prospect -- with the highest ceiling -- on defense for the Stars.

But there are challenges ahead in Day Two, as the Victory Green gang seeks to make do with a depleted draft hand:

They entered the weekend with only four picks, which would be the lowest total since the franchise moved to Dallas. They only have four picks in next year’s draft. So the Stars could have traded No. 18 to move down and accumulate more picks later in either this draft or the next one.

The Stars also have a glut of forward prospects and lack depth on defense in their pipeline, especially on the right side. They could have selected forwards Ryan Suzuki or Arthur Kaliyev or Raphael Lavoie to bolster the forward pool, but instead chose Harley to add a needed defenseman to their pipeline.

Matt has more. [SportsDayDFW]


Stars Stuff

Let’s enjoy some of the reaction to the Harley kick pick, shall we?

As it turns out, our own Derek Neumeier isn’t the only Stars writer who’s had his eye on Harley. Here’s what Josh Bell wrote in April.

Let’s forget the unfortunate name reversal and take another look at this....

Around The League(s)

Arguably, last night’s biggest first-round winner was the U.S. National Team Development Program. Red, white and blue everywhere.

The Los Angeles Kings mistake aside, here’s an interesting look at how Spencer Knight became the highest-drafted goalie since fellow American Jack Campbell.

The Vancouver Canucks had a treat for the home crowd during the first round. Clearly, there’s no point in making fans wait to see Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin get their due.

Is forward Cole Caufield even more of a draft steal than Alex DeBrincat?.

And there was a big moment for Canada, as Yukon native Dylan Cozens made history.

Jamie Benn is the poster boy for draft steals everywhere, but he’s not the only diamond from past late rounds.

Meanwhile, in non-draft headlines: Awful news for Ryan Callahan and the Tampa Bay Lightning as he receives a career-ending diagnosis.

Finally

Now here’s the Thomas Harley-related meme we should all get behind. Enjoy.