We’ve spent weeks reviewing, in excruciating detail, the Dallas Stars’ 2020 season and outlook for 2021. But what does the team look like from the national perspective?
NHL.com staff writer Tracey Myers took on the Stars as part of the league site’s 31 In 31 series. Correctly, she names the early absences of Ben Bishop and Tyler Seguin first among the team’s biggest concerns for next season. Neither franchise cornerstone is expected to return before March after enduring off-season surgeries for a torn meniscus and a labral tear, respectively.
Under the circumstances, GM Jim Nill’s priority re-signing of Anton Khudobin shows itself as a move that will not only not limit top prospect Jake Oettinger’s development, but should enhance it:
[Khudobin], who played the final 13 postseason games and helped Dallas reach the Cup Final with Bishop out, will start the season as the No. 1 goalie after signing a three-year contract Oct. 9....
[Oettinger] will back up Khudobin. The 21-year-old made his NHL debut in the postseason, playing two games and making saves on all eight shots he faced.
As for Seguin, who led the Stars with 50 points last season, the team will need to make up for his absence on the score sheet as well. They’ll look to skaters all over the lineup to fill that gap:
Dallas also will lean heavily on two players each entering his third season: defenseman Miro Heiskanen and forward Roope Hintz. Heiskanen scored 35 points (eight goals, 27 assists) in 68 games, third on the Stars behind Seguin and Benn (39). Hintz scored 33 points (19 goals, 14 assists) in 60 games, fifth on Dallas, one point behind Radulov.
“I think it’s an opportunity for everybody,” Nill said. “It’s the Roope Hintzes, the (forward) Jason Dickinsons, the (forward) Radek Faksas. Then we’ve got some young kids, (forwards) Jason Robertson, Nick Caamano, [Joel] Kiviranta, Ty Dellandrea, Joel L’Esperance, Rhett Gardner. We have some guys in the minors that are knocking on the door. So this is a great opportunity for those guys.”
There’s more at the big site. [NHL]
In case you missed it during the Thanksgiving rush, Matthew DeFranks is doing mailbag posts again.
Matt’s mail: Setting expectations after the Cup Final run, prospects and jerseys (again) https://t.co/NDu3nH50NV— Matthew DeFranks (@MDeFranks) November 19, 2020
Remember how The Hangar opened on Black Friday? It’s Cyber Monday, and they have that covered, too.
Cyber Monday Sale!— Stars Hangar (@StarsHangar) November 30, 2020
Get 30% OFF All Regular Priced Merchandise (excluding blackout, reverse retro and authentic collection categories) at https://t.co/0vPHN2c6PV
Use code Cyber30 at checkout #GoStars pic.twitter.com/J0cHkFsB80
Around The Leagues
Will some promising new vaccines make it easier to transition to a post-COVID hockey experience? Jim Morris says (don’t) hold your breath.
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has said the league hopes to return Jan. 1 and wants to play a full 82-game season with fans in arenas— Hockey Night in Canada (@hockeynight) November 29, 2020
I think the most surprising thing about Steven Ellis’ latest article is the fact that Mathew Barzal still hasn’t been re-signed.
Who will be the next major RFA to sign a deal this off-season?https://t.co/Lb7ShMjbQz— The Hockey News (@TheHockeyNews) November 29, 2020
NBC Sports has asked an interesting question, and I for one would love to see your answers.
As the other hockey parents remind: Don’t forget to let your kid carry their own equipment (no roller bags). Enjoy.