Dallas Stars Trade Jamie Oleksiak To Pittsburgh Penguins For Draft Pick

DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 22: Jamie Oleksiak
DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 22: Jamie Oleksiak /

It may have seemed like a long time coming, but it finally happened today. The Dallas Stars sent defenseman Jamie Oleksiak to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a trade.

It’s all over and done with, Dallas Stars fans.

After months and months of speculation and questioning, the Dallas Stars finally cut the cord. On Tuesday afternoon, they traded defenseman Jamie Oleksiak to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a conditional draft pick.

Oleksiak, who turns 25 on Thursday, was drafted by the Stars in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. The 6-7, 255 lb. defenseman from Toronto, Ontario began his NHL career with Dallas during the 2013 lockout season. He spent the following five seasons being an inconsistent member of the Dallas Stars roster.

The Big Rig was known around Dallas for his unwarranted physicality and constant willingness to drop the gloves. He always provided a spark for the Stars when the team needed it and knew how to use his size to his advantage.

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  • Oleksiak had plenty of pros along with some glaring cons that made him an altogether polarizing defender. His size and reach were great positives for a Dallas blue line that, for the longest time, has featured a majority of short and puck-moving defenders. He helped balance out the size and also brought a walloping physical presence to the blue line.

    But with his size positives came some ugly negatives, specifically regarding his play. For example, Oleksiak’s play in the defensive zone was sloppy for a lot of his time in Dallas. He would miss assignments and sometimes be unable to keep up with faster-skating forwards on the other side of the puck. While he was an effective closeout defender, his efficiency stalled if the opposing offense set up in the zone.

    In his time with the Dallas Stars, Oleksiak registered seven goals and 22 points in 140 career games along with an unpleasant -23 on-ice rating.

    The Stars entered the 2017-18 season with a hefty overstocking in their defensive group. There were nine defenders that were considered “NHL ready” on the Stars roster and Dallas had to make some decisions. Both the future of prospect players and their proximity to the cap wall forced the Stars to make some moves.

    As a result, they put Patrik Nemeth on waivers. He was eventually claimed by the Colorado Avalanche and cut the Stars’ problem down to eight defenders.

    Throughout the first two months of the season, the battle between Jamie Oleksiak and Julius Honka for the final starting spot raged on. With Marc Methot sidelined with a knee injury and Greg Pateryn earning a starting spot in the lineup, there was one spot available for the two to battle for. I guess we know who won.

    Oleksiak was one of the final first round selections by GM Joe Nieuwendyk still remaining on the team. With the Big Rig gone, Radek Faksa is now the only first-rounder left.

    In return, the Dallas Stars picked up a conditional fourth-round pick from the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. Pittsburgh owns two picks in that round and the Stars will be given the higher of the two picks.

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    This trade seems as though it was a long time coming with all of the drama and action swirling in the Dallas defense over the past few months.

    While the Stars are losing a physical asset on the blue line, they are picking up an asset for the future and creating a better breeding ground for their NHL defenders.