The Dallas Stars are no stranger to “winning” the offseason, only to come up flat in the subsequent season and/or postseason. But what if they didn’t just win this next offseason, but it was “perfect”?
Saad Yousuf imagines what would have to (realistically) go right, including everyone successfully recovering from injury. Or, at least, mostly recovered:
Given what we know, even in dreaming of the perfect scenario, it’s tough to expect Bishop to return to 100 percent health and effectiveness. But Bishop getting to 80 percent would be huge for the Stars. He’s not too far removed from being a Vezina-caliber goaltender, so even if he comes back a shade or two under that, it still clears up a lot of things for the Stars.
Such an offseason would also include the Stars’ RFAs as well as Jamie Oleksiak signing for relatively cheap deals, helping open up some cap space. Could that help the Stars pursue one of the top UFA targets such as Taylor Hall?
Dallas may not be able to be the highest bidder on the market but if they can come close and sell Hall on playing with veterans like Jamie Benn, Seguin and Pavelski while meshing with young talents like Robertson and Hintz it could be an intriguing sell on a winning situation.
You can read more about Saad’s fantasy world behind the paywall here.
Around the League
Goodbye, four-game nights...
- It took two overtimes, but a 3-2 win gave the New York Islanders a 3-2 series lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins. [Lighthouse Hockey]
- In a similar vein, the Toronto Maple Leafs took a 2-1 series lead with their 2-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens. [Pension Plan Puppets]
- Meanwhile the Florida Panthers staved off elimination, winning Game 5 against the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-1. [Litterbox Cats]
- No such luck for the Edmonton Oilers, who were swept by the Winnipeg Jets after a 4-3 triple overtime loss. [Copper and Blue]
Is there even any hope for Edmonton going forward?
"At the end of the day ... you’re going to win a Cup with those guys in the middle."— The Athletic NHL (@TheAthleticNHL) May 25, 2021
The Oilers are six years into Connor McDavid’s career and seven years into Leon Draisaitl's, yet they've never managed to adequately support the duo.
Can that change?https://t.co/Q3LndiJvI1
Back to Florida briefly — their win was fueled in large part due to Spencer Knight, who made his playoff debut:
Spencer Knight became the youngest goalie in NHL history to make his playoff debut in an elimination game and the second-youngest netminder to win his playoff debut.@MikeyJ_MMA has more. ⤵️https://t.co/8G810MdcIg— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) May 25, 2021
Translation: Canada is winless.
With Fewer NHL Stars, World Championship Has Been Full of Upsets— The Hockey News (@TheHockeyNews) May 24, 2021
Upset victories have been a common theme at the men's World Championship this month, creating one of the most competitive international tournaments in quite some time, writes @StevenEllisTHN https://t.co/aVmkC4X0mh
Finally, can anyone upset Joe Thornton for the OGWAC title? Down Goes Brown gives his rankings: