The Stars free agent list for the upcoming offseason is mainly chock full of mediocre names to the franchise.
But with these names comes questions for the Stars regarding what to do with each one.
Do we re-sign all of them? I mean the team did really good this year, why not keep it as it is?
Do we re-sign some of them? The team did good but not everyone on this list contributed a great deal. Dump some of them.
Or do we dump all of them? These guys never helped out on the ice. Clean the slate and get a fresh start.
Well, if you’re not sick of my opinion already, let’s see if I can get you there. Here’s what I think regarding every single player hitting restricted free agency on the Stars:
The RFA’s (Restricted Free Agent):
As mentioned in my report card on him, Eakin is going to be a prime factor in the Stars future on their way to the Stanley Cup. But, this was his last season under contract and the 23 year old ginger is officially an RFA. This means that the Stars have until July 1st to give him their final offer before he is whisked away into the free agency ocean. If another team sends him an offer before then and he accepts it, the Stars have 5 days from then to match the offer which would result in Dallas keeping him without trading him for the entire next season. But this rarely ever happens so don’t look for an offer sheet to make an appearance. The Stars will most likely be looking to re-sign him and use his physicality and skills to their advantage in the coming years.
Just like Eakin, Jeffrey is officially an RFA and after July 1st he can do as he pleases. In his report card, I said that he is a valuable 2 way player that can help AHL and the NHL when necessary. His skill set is impressive for the age of 26 and is most likely going to be offered a new contract. If he doesn’t please this year, the Stars can do as they please with him during the regular season, but I don’t see that being a problem.
Roussel is a tricky one. He is scheduled to be an RFA this offseason and I honestly have no idea how the Stars are thinking in regards to what to do with him.
On one hand, he is a valuable free agent and is widely loved by the entire fan base. His physicality cannot be found anywhere else in the NHL and he is always looking to pick on the big boys and get under their skin like a splinter. This physicality is what moves the Stars along and motivates them through each game. If there’s a bounty (Getzlaf), he’ll be the hunter and find a way (using Getzlaf’s face mask) to take down this vigilante and keep him down. This is a valuable asset and Roussel could end up being one of the main faces of the franchise in the years to come along the rest of the Three Musketeers (I’ll make sure this catches on) Ryan Garbutt and Cody Eakin.
On the other hand, Roussel is almost TOO addicted to physical confrontation and this is not what the organization is looking for. He basically set the Stars regular season penalty minutes record with a whopping 209 minutes in the sin bin at the ripe old age of 24. This is NOT what the Stars mediocre PK needs and Lindy has already had one too many meetings with Roussel talking about bringing the minutes down or he wouldn’t be wearing green much longer.
In my opinion, I like the first option more. Roussel needs a new deal and if they can get him to tune it down JUST THE SLIGHTEST BIT then they’ll be set with a blossoming new face.
Less of a question on this one, though it is still hanging in the balance. Dillon has proved himself over his first two seasons to be a powerhouse defenseman and one that the organization may want to keep in Dallas, though his playoff appearance was less than memorable this past season.
It almost seems as if his physicality is the only thing he’s got left going for him.
Dillon ended the season with 80 games played but only 6 goals and 11 assists. Even for a defenseman these are below average numbers, especially for an average of 21 minutes on the freeze, which adds to over a third of the game. If his numbers truly are at the best they’re gonna get, then it’s time to separate ties with Dillon. Being a free agent, he could find a new home rather easily from a team in the middle of reconstruction. But at his young age of 24, there aren’t MVP standards to live up to. He will most likely get a new contract and could be the face of the Dallas blue line in the years to come. It all depends on how he performs.
As you can see, it looks as though all the RFA’s will be getting new contracts before they can fly away on July 1st. But with young ages comes rookie expectations, though some of these guys exceed the standard.
I’ll do the UFA’s tomorrow and they’re a different story for sure.
The Stars young fighters are already making an impression and are ready to show that a young team CAN take the Cup.
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