There was a chance that the Dallas Stars would be playing Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals tonight. Instead, they’re back in Dallas and the organization has already had to shift their focus towards the next major event: the NHL Entry Draft next Tuesday.
The Stars’ first pick of the draft will be 30th overall, which is much later than they’re accustomed to. But director of amateur scouting Joe McDonnell feels confident they can land a quality player at that position:
“This year we think the draft goes very deep,” McDonnell said. “I would say this year, there is a lot of guys after maybe 15 that are very interchangeable. So we think at 30 we’ll probably get somebody on our list we would have rated at 20, so we think it’s a good position that way.”
Thanks to the stoppage, many have spent the last several months re-evaluating the 2020 draft class, especially now since many of those same players have now started their seasons overseas. But the Stars are trying to not let recency bias affect their process:
“We’re not changing our list,” McDonnell said. “We made our list at the end of May or early June, and there might be the odd variance, but the only thing that has really changed is players that might have had medical issues and just seeing if they’ve had surgeries and how those went.”
You can read more from Sean Shapiro here.
Around the League
Although they fell short of the Stanley Cup this year, the Stars proved a lot of doubters wrong:
Will Rick Bowness be back behind the bench? It sure seems like it, as his love for coaching is stronger than ever:
“I know I'm getting up there, and there's a lot more behind me than ahead of me, but I still have the passion." https://t.co/3Xq5wyUJlk— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) September 30, 2020
Around the League
It’s the end of an era — the New York Rangers have bought out the final year of Henrik Lundqvist’s contract:
THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING!— Henrik Lundqvist (@HLundqvist30) September 30, 2020
15 years ago, I played my first game for @NYRangers I came here with high hopes and big dreams but in my wildest imagination, I could never have pictured the amazing ride that lay ahead.. pic.twitter.com/uo0HJMZnCj
Down Goes Brown ranks this year’s playoff series from worst to best, with a certain Stars series taking home the crown:
Some powerful stuff here — Vancouver Canucks forward Tyler Motte shares his battles with mental health issues:
So appreciative of @tmotte_14 for sharing his story. Tyler opens up about being diagnosed with anxiety and depression, hoping his candor can help others.— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) September 30, 2020
“It was an interesting feeling, to ask someone else for help. But I'm very glad I did." https://t.co/bUvIbLqPO9
As discussed in the lead, the Draft is less than a week away. Corey Pronman gives his final evaluations of this year’s draft class:
Note: You should also check out our own Derek Neumeier‘s rankings here if you haven’t already.
Finally, after the Draft comes Free Agency. Here are some of the top wingers to keep an eye on. You know, just in case: