Dallas Stars Daily Links: Behind The Injury That Helped Define Roope Hintz’s Season

The Masterton nominee was a perennial game-time decision, and now we know why. Plus, the Stars thank the fans, choose your President’s Trophy team, and more.

It was a strange year for Roope Hintz to become a full-fledged NHL superstar. He gave Dallas Stars fans a cup overflowing with highlight-reel moments, even as they began to wonder if “Game-Time Decision” was his new middle name. It became a sort of ritual – the burst of celebration when he joined the pregame warmups, the quiet dread when his name was missing from the forward lines list.

Now that the Stars’ season is really, really over, the story of how Hintz became the team’s Masterton Trophy nominee is emerging in its fullness. The Athletic’s Saad Yousuf has detailed a sequence of events that started last September:

Hintz’s ailment began in Game 4 of the 2020 Stanley Cup Final. Just under six minutes into the second period, Tampa Bay Lightning’s forward Tyler Johnson’s stick got caught in Hintz’s skate and led him to tumble into the boards. Hintz remained on the ice for a little bit before he gingerly walked down the tunnel. Hintz missed the remainder of the series as the Stars fell in six games....

After the season ended, Hintz went back to his native Finland. He took four weeks off in hopes of “settling it down,” but when he returned to training, he felt the groin injury again. Hintz underwent an MRI upon his return to Dallas for the 2021 season, which revealed an issue that required surgery in order to be fixed. While the Stars are still awaiting word from a specialist, Hintz will undergo surgery this offseason. It isn’t expected to be a major operation and Hintz is expected to make a full recovery and be ready for training camp this fall, according to a team source.

Marvel as you must at Hintz’s perseverance, but he has a more matter-of-fact view of what he accomplished:

Aside from the simple fact that Hintz was playing, how he was playing was even more impressive. In games, it was seldom noticeable that Hintz was hampered, even after he took vicious hits and had some dangerous collisions. Bowness said Hintz has been the team’s best forward and the numbers back up that assessment. Hintz has scored 15 goals and 28 assists for 43 points in 41 games.

“I found a way to manage it,” Hintz said. “I’ve been playing well, so why not play and help the team win?”

There’s more behind the paywall. [The Athletic DFW]

Stars Stuff

The Stars have posted a salute to the fans who masked up and made the ride to see them in person this year.

And they went even further than that.

Around The Leagues

The #Disco is closed. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.

But elsewhere, there’s still the President’s Trophy to play for. Who’s your team: the Vegas Golden Knights, the Colorado Avalanche, or the Toronto Maple Leafs?

What can the right trade-deadline acquisition do for a playoffs-bound team? Tracey Myers examines six cases, from Sam Bennett to David Savard.

Another day, another non-playoffs team parting ways with its coach. The New York Rangers have dismissed David Quinn and most of his staff.

Sure, they got an extra week in the regular season – but to be fair, things just take longer in Canada.

And a quick reminder that there’s one Benn who’s going to the playoffs.

Greetings From Scenic Cedar Park

The Texas Stars (hey, congratulations on those now-secure links!) will end their season on the road, too. Next stop, the Iowa Wild....

Meanwhile, Stephen Meserve brings this Adam Mascherin stat that seems to perfectly encapsulate the entire organization’s so-close-yet-so-far season.


I dunno, Dom Luszczyszyn is right about a lot. What do you think?