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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Examining The Case For Miro Heiskanen’s Next Contract

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He’s due a big raise - but is the biggest yet to come? Plus, the NHL’s romance with sports betting hits an awkward patch, remembering Derek Boogaard, and more.

Dallas Stars v Chicago Blackhawks
No. 4 is getting paid one way or another - but managing a flat cap will take some doing.
Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

Let’s get this out of the way first: A “down year” for Miro Heiskanen is a matter of perspective.

As one of the Dallas Stars’ staunchest defenders, he was on the ice for more minutes per game – nearly 25 – than any other player. As an already condensed schedule became actively punishing, he still maintained what would have been a 40-point pace in a normal 82-game season.

But the expectations for Heiskanen are already sky-high, and his upcoming contract negotiations will reflect that. Miro himself is still taking in what that will mean, as The Dallas Morning News’ Matthew DeFranks reports:

“I think [my season] went pretty well,” Heiskanen said. “Of course, can always be better, but I’m really happy how I played defensively. Of course, offensively, want to create more and be more effective. I think the overall game was really good. Of course, want to create more offensively.”...

“We had lots of games and I was focusing on them,” Heiskanen said. “I haven’t think about a lot of my contract, but I have time to think about it now. We’ll see. We’ll see what happens.”

DeFranks took a long look at Heiskanen’s numbers – and the Stars’ cap situation. The result is a new piece on why a bridge deal could be the best thing for everyone:

For the Stars, bridge deals are cheaper since they do not buy out the lucrative years of unrestricted free agency. That would allow them some flexibility in the near term as they try to re-sign Jamie Oleksiak, John Klingberg and ready themselves for the next extensions for Roope Hintz and Denis Gurianov. A three-year term would also make Heiskanen an RFA at the end of the deal instead of walking him directly to UFA.

For Heiskanen, a three-year deal would give him time to boost his offensive numbers and cash in on his third contract. It would also mean the Stars would only have one more season of Jamie Benn’s contract on the books, and would likely be signed when the salary cap is going up again. Currently, because of the financial hit of the pandemic, the salary cap is stagnant.

Matt has more. [SportsDayDFW]


Stars Stuff

The Stars have a lot of thinking to do about their UFA contracts, too.

Around The Leagues

Leon Draisaitl hit an interesting milestone in April, and Patrick Kane is among those who could be next in line.

Don’t look now, but the NHL’s push to enter the bookmaking sector could end up biting them in an undisclosed area.

It’s been 10 years since Derek Boogaard’s death, and his family doesn’t want him – or his struggle with brain injury – to be forgotten. [The Athletic]

Greetings From Scenic Cedar Park

So why were the Texas Stars trying to win 1-0? Are they working the big team’s side of the street now?

But you’re still ready to start the weekend with more hockey. Of course you are.

Beloved former T-Star Derek Hulak is in the news, and behind the bench, at his alma mater.

Finally

All the best should go out to Jason Robertson 100 percent of the time, but 110 percent of the time during API Heritage Month. Enjoy.