NHL Free Agency: Should the Stars Bring Back Loui Eriksson?

Should the Dallas Stars bring back Loui Eriksson?

Loui Eriksson was sent to the Bruins in that famous July 4th trade involving Joe Morrow and Rich Peverley. Also, Tyler Seguin was sent to Dallas for their troubles.

The highlight of the trade was so high in Dallas, many forgot what the Stars actually gave up for Seguin. Everyone would do it again in a heartbeat, but Loui Eriksson was a fan favorite in Dallas for years. And for good reason.

Eriksson, who will be 31 in about 3 weeks, played seven season in Dallas. His best year in Dallas was 2010-11 when he scored 27 goals and notched 46 helpers for 73 points. These were the glory years for 'Loui', because the seasons on either side of his career year he put up 71 points. Those three years were the best hockey Eriksson had ever played, and likely the best he will ever play.

His time in Boston got off to a rough start. He missed 20 games with a concussion in his first year and struggle to produce. However, Eriksson settled into his role with the B's and put up 63 points (30 G 33 A). It was only the second time in Eriksson's career he scored 30 goals (2008-09: 36 goals).

So, clearly the guy can still play.

But what would make Eriksson such a valuable asset to the Dallas Stars isn't necessarily his ability to still put the puck in the net, it's his ability to keep his opponents from putting the puck in theirs. Eriksson's career Corsi For is 54.8 percent, 57.2 percent in the last three years. Granted, that was in a highly structured scheme with the Bruins, but the numbers are impressive.

Taking a deeper dive, Loui has had a career Corsi For Relative of between 5.3 and 10.1 percent in the last four seasons. That means that no matter which scheme he played in, he made his teammates better in possession. That year of 10.1 Corsi For Relative? His last season in Dallas.

Eriksson's zone starts have typically been 57/43 offensive to defensive. Only time will tell if the zone starts are the cause of his exceptional possession numbers, but they are certainly a factor.

It isn't hard to see where Loui would fit on the Dallas Stars roster. Putting him with Radek Faksa and Ales Hemsky would be a great start, no disrespect to Antoine Roussel. The line might lose some snarl, but would certainly gain some hockey IQ and some goal scoring prowess.

The question is, with every unrestricted free agent, how much is Dallas willing to play for a utility-knife player that would probably play most of his minutes with the "third line"?

Eriksson would be a valuable member of both sides of special teams. He can play at the half-wall on the second power play unit or a slot poacher/designated rebounder for the first crew. Loui would give the Stars another talented and disciplined defender with which to kill penalties.

All emotions aside, the skills Eriksson brings to the table seem to be a perfect fit for Dallas. As far as I know, there were no bridges burned in his departure from Dallas, so he would probably be willing to return.

The issue is, like I said earlier, money. Loui is a coveted player from an experience standpoint and his skillset would help just about every team in the league. Also, being 30 almost 31, he is probably looking for his last pay day. As he should be.

It remains to be seen if Eriksson's number is even in the ballpark as the Stars, but if it is, I would love Jim Nill to give it a go.

How would you feel about bring Loooooui Eriksson back to Dallas?