3. D – Jani Hakanpää
What can the Dallas Stars do with a 6’5, 220-pound blueliner that has NHL playoff experience? The better question might be, what can’t they do?
Jain Hakanpää signed with the Stars for 3-years and $4.5 million following his last gig with the Carolina Hurricanes. Hakanpää is as strong and plays as physical as one would expect given his size. The 29-year old Finnish defenseman also skates very well and can fire torpedoes from the blueline if given opportunity.
There will be games that require a bigger, more physical lineup of which Hakanpää will be a difference-maker
Hakanpää’s impact with the Dallas Stars is identical to Ryan Reaves’ impact with the Vegas Golden Knights in recent seasons. There will be games that require a bigger, more physical lineup of which Hakanpää will be a difference-maker. We also expect some time on the penalty kill unit for the 2-year NHL veteran.
Like Suter, there were many teams interested in adding Hakanpää this season. Thankfully, he choose to sign with Dallas where he’ll be integrated with a handful of Finnish players. Playing with so many of his fellow countrymen should prevent any lengthy adjustment or awkward periods in Dallas.
Who are the new faces on the Dallas Stars that you think will provide an immediate impact? Find Blackout Dallas on Twitter and let us know. -J.G.