Dallas Stars Daily Links: Nils Lundkvist Enters The Picture

The right-handed defender sees an opportunity to shine with the Stars. Plus, a new top-200 ranking, a hazing scandal in junior hockey, and more.

The Dallas Stars traded draft picks, including a conditional first-rounder, for Nils Lundkvist. And we know how highly Jim Nill values his draft picks. Dare we imagine...they’re a little hyped about it?

Certainly, the Stars’ new Swedish right-hander has a stat sheet that suggests a bright future in the highest league. The Dallas Morning News’ Matthew DeFranks put it in context in his latest post:

Lundkvist turned in the most productive season ever by an SHL teenager in 2019-20, with 31 points in 45 games as a 19-year-old. That outpaced reigning Calder Trophy winner Moritz Seider by three points. It was 10 points more than Victor Hedman’s 18-year-old campaign. It was 11 points more than Rasmus Dahlin’s pre-draft season.

His past suggests a high ceiling despite the usual drawbacks for a young, offensive defenseman: not enough size or defensive capabilities.

But the 22-year-old blueliner put up a single goal and only three assists in his first 25 NHL games with the New York Rangers. Will Pete DeBoer’s system provide him the space to throw his caution to the winds – or at least skate the puck more?

Lundkvist said he learned from his experience last year and wants to adjust his mentality in order to display “more courage and more edge.”

“Maybe you do the safe side to not do mistakes, but I feel like if I’m going to be myself, I need to try to do things that make me good: making plays, skating with the puck,” Lundkvist said. “When I played my 25 NHL games, I was a little bit too careful. I feel like I learned a lot from it. I hope I can learn from that experience and develop and be better this year.”

Matt has more. [SportsDayDFW]

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