By Mike Heika , Staff Writer Contact Mike Heika on Twitter:
The Stars activate the 2015-16 division Thursday at home adjoin Pittsburgh. Dallas has absent the playoffs for six of the accomplished seven seasons, but it has upped its amount $20 actor in the accomplished four years and appears accessible to accomplish a big splash.
Here are the top bristles questions adverse the team:
The Stars aftermost division accomplished 29th in save allotment and absent the playoffs admitting scoring the additional best goals in the NHL. To fix that, GM Jim Nill active adept Antti Niemi to a three-year arrangement that averages $4.5 actor to anatomy a goaltending bike with Kari Lehtonen. He additionally assassin adept Jeff Reese from Philadelphia to be the new goaltending coach. The Stars are advance a lot in aggravating to fix this problem.
In the accomplished three years, the Stars accept added Tyler Seguin, Jason Spezza, Patrick Sharp, Ales Hemsky and Valeri Nichushkin to their top six advanced group. That’s a ton of skill, but will they be able to actualize the all-important allure to comedy acceptable two-way hockey? Jamie Benn led the NHL in scoring aftermost division with 87 credibility in 82 games, and he should be a active abhorrent force again.
Since the alpha of aftermost season, Dallas has absent Trevor Daley, Brenden Dillon, Sergei Gonchar and Kevin Connauton on defense. Now, they are aptitude on John Klingberg, Johnny Oduya, Jason Demers and a leash of youngsters. With Stephen Johns, Esa Lindell and Julius Honka aggravating to advance up from the AHL, is there alike added alteration advanced for the defensemen? And can this accumulation of eight do a bigger job of befitting the scoring affairs to a minimum this season?
In Lindy Ruff’s two years with the team, the Stars accept fatigued 290 ability comedy opportunities anniversary season. That ranked fourth in the NHL two seasons ago and additional aftermost season. If this aggregation continues to draw ability plays, it seems to accept the befalling to be the best ability comedy in the league. Dallas was angry for fifth in ability comedy goals aftermost division at 55. Detroit led the NHL with 70. Could the accession of Patrick Sharp and the acknowledgment of a advantageous Val Nichushkin be abundant to arch that gap?
The adolescent advanced was acquired from Detroit in the Erik Cole barter aftermost bounce and was accepted to absorb the division in his built-in Sweden. However, he has been absorbing in preseason and has fabricated the aperture night roster. Janmark could go aback to Sweden at any time, or he could end up banishment Valeri Nichushkin or Ales Hemsky to action for account in the top six. He is an X-Factor account watching.
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