The free agent market opens today. The Dallas Stars still have three unrestricted free agents (Corey Perry, Mattias Janmark, Anton Khudobin) and three restricted free agents (Radek Faksa, Roope Hintz, Denis Gurianov) on their roster.
Khudobin’s stellar performance in the 2019-20 playoffs means that he has more than earned his next contract, whether that is with Dallas or another team. In the era of flat salary caps due to COVID-19, this could be a roadblock for Dallas, as his performance has warranted a higher payout and they are facing a cap crunch heading into next season. General Manager Jim Nill said on Thursday that Khudobin will test the market today, but did not rule out Khudobin returning to Dallas.
Perry’s goal-scoring in the playoffs, especially in the Stanley Cup Final, made him a key part of the Stars’ success in the bubble. He was signed on July 1st last year to a one-year deal with a low payout, which, if duplicated, would be amenable to the Stars’ salary cap heading into the 2020-21 season. However, other forwards with goal-scoring and grit are available on the market, though it remains to be seen if they can be enticed into similarly appealing contracts with Dallas.
Janmark is a solid middle-six forward, who has proven useful with his playmaking and presence at both ends of the ice. Though his contract is up, fans will have to see if the Stars offer him an extension or not. If they do offer him an extension contract, it would make logistical sense in an uncertain future for the league, as it is would be a contract with a known entity, rather than an unknown entity in the form of a free agent from another team.
Faksa, Hintz, and Gurianov are also restricted free agents now that the playoffs have concluded. Their contributions to the Stars’ play, especially the offensive output, has meant that they clearly have carved out a place for themselves on the roster and with promising talent for the next several seasons to boot.
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