Between Joe Pavelski defying Father Time and Jason Robertson scoring 41 goals, it’s easy to overlook the impact of the third member of the Dallas Stars’ top trio, Roope Hintz. The center was a nearly point-per-game player last season, and when you look at the skillset he brings to the table, he might very well be “perfect:”
If you were to draw up a perfect player on paper, it might be Hintz. He’s big (6-3, 210), strong and incredibly fast. Furthermore, he’s smart, anticipates plays well and can be very good defensively when the challenge is presented.
...He can get banged up, and while he often plays through his injuries, they definitely affect his play... But those are small issues when you consider what Hintz does for this team.
Thanks to the bridge contract he signed before “breaking out” in 2020, Hintz has also been rather cheap for the Stars given his contributions. Of course, that’s all set to change next summer, making this season a big one:
Hintz is in the final year of his contract and should be due a big raise. While that’s not the motivating factor, we’ve seen in the past that many players put up huge numbers in a contract year.
You can read more from Mike Heika here.
Mike also did a season preview of the Stars’ top player, Miro Heiskanen:
Heiskanen will make whoever he plays with better, and that's a huge part of his impact on the team.— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) August 15, 2022
On the other side of the offensive spectrum, David Castillo takes a deep dive into Radek Faksa’s game:
Tales From the Clipped: Why Is Radek Faksa's Offense So Awful? on Puck Salvos https://t.co/srHqYEjG0T— David Castillo (@DavidCastilloAC) August 16, 2022
Around the League
It’s mid-offseason, so it’s time for another lineup game with Down Goes Brown:
Usually most business is squared away at this point, but not so much this summer:
Things have been trending in the right direction for the Minnesota Wild, who might soon be getting another boost from prospect Marco Rossi:
He traveled hundreds of thousands of kilometers. He navigated a COVID-related health scare.— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) August 16, 2022
And now, after a long journey from Austria, Minnesota Wild prospect Marco Rossi is finally on the cusp of the NHL.@russohockey with more: https://t.co/wxWwY0mlmZ pic.twitter.com/gYboHWhEfJ
Finally, here are the COVID-19 protocols for the upcoming season: