It’s been more than a year since the Dallas Stars signed Joe Pavelski and Corey Perry, and some fans have already written them off as more-or-less wasted contracts. Both have looked out of place at pivotal moments, and Perry’s long walk to the locker room during the Winter Classic will be on the wrong kind of highlight reels for a long time.
In his latest piece for The Athletic, Sean Shapiro acknowledges the regular-season letdowns that have made both veteran forwards look like misguided front-office decisions. But he also reminds that the boss was thinking beyond the regular season when he made those deals:
For much of the season, Pavelski looked like an overpaid $7 million player who didn’t fit with his new team. Perry’s season was “highlighted” by a dirty hit that earned him a five-game suspension and a walk of shame to the locker room in front of 85,630 fans at the Cotton Bowl in the Winter Classic.
It was disappointing, but Stars general manager Jim Nill wasn’t focusing on the regular season when he signed Pavelski and Perry.
What Nill wanted was two veterans who know how to come up clutch on a march to the Stanley Cup Finals. And Shapiro sees evidence that this is exactly what the Stars will take with them when they depart for Edmonton on Sunday:
Pavelski’s line with Mattias Janmark and Alexander Radulov was the best forward unit in a scrimmage the Green Team won 4-0. Pavelski got to the net, found open space and had multiple chances in tight, including his goal that made it 1-0 on a backhanded rebound in the first period. Pavelski later helped set up Janmark’s goal that made it 3-0.
Perry has been on a line with Jamie Benn and Jason Dickinson since the start of camp. The trio struggled to make much of an impact in Wednesday’s scrimmage but were more noticeable in Thursday’s scrimmage, often going against the Stars’ FCC checking line. Perry also stood out when the Stars worked on the power play for 14 minutes, having an impact on three of the four goals Dallas scored.
Sean has more, including additional scrimmage notes. [The Athletic DFW]
Speaking of Corey Perry, here’s a cute video of him talking about his kid (and if you can’t be believe I just wrote that, I can write it again).
"I told him I was going to hockey, and he told me to say hi to @VictorEGreen."— x-Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) July 23, 2020
Corey Perry talks about how he's kept in touch with family and his young son during summer camp: pic.twitter.com/xqqu9FtZJk
The checking line of Radek Faksa, Blake Comeau and Andrew Cogliano want to spend more time getting on the scoreboard when hockey returns.
The "FCC" line defined our hard-to-play-against mentality all season as one of the team's most reliable trios.— x-Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) July 23, 2020
The unit's goal for the playoffs? "I think all three of us need to push to do more offensively." https://t.co/1ip9Y9K7LQ
The Rinky Dinking podcast is back, and Razor and Heika are talking tournament.
Around The League(s)
Let the “Clash of the Titans” memes begin.
Whatever you might think of the name, just admit that this logo is sick.
So where does Seattle Kraken fit in the pantheon of all NHL team names ever? Sean McIndoe has many thoughts.
And all of a sudden the 2021 expansion draft looms large and potentially terrifying. Here’s a reprise of The Athletic’s thought experiment from earlier this month.
What will @NHLSeattle_ look like coming out of next year's expansion draft? Earlier this month, correspondents in every NHL city projected protected lists, from which we cobbled together Mock Draft 4.0. It was fun, illuminating exercise: https://t.co/Anfn232VLC— Eric Duhatschek (@eduhatschek) July 21, 2020
He’s already earned the 2020 Art Ross Trophy and been named a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award. Can Leon Draisaitl run the table?
Edmonton's Leon Draisaitl won the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL's leading scorer https://t.co/pSgQQGJWfp— Hockey Night in Canada (@hockeynight) July 21, 2020
Greetings From Beautiful Boise
Good to know the Idaho Steelheads’ Colton Saucerman is keeping the Yukon Cornelius spirit alive.
The DoppelRangers are an interesting way to let fans be fans, and to raise money for charity at the same time – plus you can find Tyler Seguin in the cutout crowd.