4 Thoughts About the Dallas Stars’ Moves

The Dallas Stars made a series of moves this past week.

Previously, the Stars’ memorable season ended with a thud as they closed the 2023 postseason with a lopsided 6-0 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final on May 29th.

Whether you agree or disagree with the Stars’ recent moves, you have a right to your opinion, just like I do. With that said, I have four thoughts to share.

Stars’ Draft Class Was Well-Rounded
The Dallas Stars seemed to focus on prospects with their 2023 NHL Draft picks.

The Stars traded a 2023 conditional fourth-round pick to the New York Rangers for Nils Lundkvist. As a result, they didn’t have a first-round draft pick this year.

The Stars drafted Tristan Bertucci 61st overall in the second round, Brad Gardiner 79th overall in the third round, Aram Minnetian 125th overall in the fourth round, Arno Tiefensee 157th overall in the fifth round, Angus Macdonnell 189th overall in the sixth round, and Sebastian Bradshaw 221st overall in the seventh round.

I have preliminary thoughts on the Stars’ six draft picks. I can’t predict the future, but I’ll give the Stars a “C” grade for now. Minnetian was considered a late bloomer, but I think he became an excellent hybrid defender who can move the puck well. Macdonnell is an all-around forward (and an agitator). Tiefensee is arguably a sleeper pick as far as goaltenders go. Bertucci is an offensive defenseman that might need to work on his defense. Gardiner’s a forward who feels like a potential depth player. Bradshaw has a cool name, but he played Tier 1 hockey this season, so he may or may not help the Stars out as a forward.

Stars’ Re-Signing of Evgenii Dadonov Made Sense

Evgenii Dadonov won’t leave Dallas to become a free agent.

Dadonov signed a two-year, $4.5 million contract extension with the Dallas Stars on June 27th. The 34-year-old forward has only been a Dallas Star since February 26th but has made an impact thus far. He posted 33 points (seven goals, 26 assists) in 73 regular season games with the Stars (and Montreal Canadiens) and 10 points (four goals, six assists) in 16 postseason games.

Dadonov was one of my top five players to be re-signed, and Stars general manager Jim Nill did the right thing. After the re-signing, Nill told NHL.com, “Re-signing Evgenii was high on our priority list … He was a key player for us down the stretch, and he elevated his game on the big stage during the playoffs. We’re happy to get a deal done [that works] for both sides.”

Ryan Suter Remains a Dallas Star: Yay or Nay?

I’ve mentioned that the Dallas Stars should buy out veteran defenseman Ryan Suter, even though that would be a short-term solution at most. I’m not perfect, and I’ll admit that I was wrong.

Stars general manager Jim Nill decided not to buy out Suter. Nill told The Athletic, “At his cap hit, I think he’s a fine player.”

Although I can see where Nill is coming from, I must agree to disagree with him. Suter, a 38-year-old defenseman, isn’t as fast as he was with the Minnesota Wild. Nill’s apparent loyalty to Suter may or may not lead to an “I told you so” moment next season. Suter isn’t awful, as he usually plays 16+ minutes a game, but he’s not Miro Heiskanen.

This postseason showed us that Thomas Harley was ready to go as the Stars’ No. 2 defenseman. That being said, Harley can play alongside Heiskanen.

Ty Dellandrea’s Hard Work Has Paid Off

Dallas Stars forward Ty Dellandrea may not be a household name, but his hard work and learning abilities have paid off this past season.

Dellandrea, a 22-year-old forward, will turn 23 on July 31st, but he has lots to be proud of. For example, his first multi-goal game in Game 5 of the 2023 Western Conference Final, his durability despite playing all 82 games in 2022-23, and his ability to play a regular role for the Stars.

In my opinion, Dellandrea is an underrated player. He was one of the four players whom the Stars issued qualifying offers on June 30th. As a result, Dallas retained his negotiating rights, along with namesake rights for Nick Caamano, Riley Damiani, and Scott Reedy.

Dellandrea’s heroics are astonishing. If he stays healthy, he’ll continue to amaze Stars (and NHL) fans.

Ana Kieu

Ana Kieu is a journalist by trade. Her love for sports shows in her writing, editing, and podcasting work. She writes about the NHL for Inside The Rink.

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