Election Season: Which Dallas Stars Campaigns to Follow

Oct 15, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Stars center Roope Hintz (24) in action during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Nashville Predators at the American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 15, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Stars center Roope Hintz (24) in action during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Nashville Predators at the American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

With midterms elections approaching, it’s only befitting that some of the Stars begin their election season by campaigning. Around the country, the court of public opinion is garnering information so that they may place educated ballots on the most deserving of parties. Votes are a scarcity, particularly when it comes to the hockey market of Dallas, Texas. For this reason, it’s important to raise awareness about which Stars are in the running for what position and who their opponents may be. On top of addressing the landscape, we’ll discuss the likelihood of that Dallas Star claiming the seat that’s being voted on.

Dallas Stars Election Season: Wyatt Johnston for Calder Trophy

We’ve all been enamored by this kid since he buried his first one-time clapper on the power play from a Seguin feed in Nashville last week. There’s a short list of Dallas Stars that have even played as a teen, but the list of those who’ve scored is even shorter. He plays a responsible game and has not looked out of place at the big-league level. With that confidence, and opportunities on the power play, he’s sure to gain traction and start scoring at a reasonable clip for a standout rookie.

He’ll be running against Owen Power, the representative from Buffalo, and Matty Beniers, a candidate from Seattle. Each of these aforementioned candidates have pressure to perform immediately, being thrust into the top half of their respective lineups. Perhaps the ease-in of being the 3C for the Stars is the prime position for our youthful centreman to take the race. One things for sure, he’s earned a look beyond the standard 9-day tryout.

Dallas Stars Election Season: Miro Heiskanen for Norris Trophy

Playing on Miro’s natural left side has restored his look of effortless gliding on the ice, finding space and attacking the weak points of opposing defenses. Pair that with his new role as the QB on the top squad of the power play and you’ll see Miro tap into his true offensive potential this year. Now that he’s not being hindered by coaching decisions, he’ll put forth the offensive output that Norris voters downplay but still like to see before voting on a winner. Another advantage is the competition he’s facing.

There hasn’t been a repeat Norris winner since Erik Karlsson in ’15, and there hasn’t been a consecutive repeat since Nick Lidstrom in ’08. With Cale Makar fresh off of a victory and Roman Josi holding the seat a season ago, Miro could be the candidate to really shake things up. While prior victories doesn’t necessarily repulse Norris voters, it does indicate that their inclined to search for new blood. Miro has been in Norris conversations in the past, but this year is more of a candidacy for the title. This campaign has the backing to catch a lot of votes this season.

Dallas Stars Election Season: Jake Oettinger for Vezina Trophy

A three game sample size is relatively small for a goalie but the last 10 games are enough to put our dearly beloved Otter on the map for this title. Jake’s performance with Calgary last year had North American’s nervous that they weren’t going to get a long-awaited battle of Alberta in the second round. He almost single-handedly carried the team into the second round, saving 10 goals above average (if you’re into analytics). Thus far, he’s picked right back up where he left off with a 1.00 GAA through 3 games.

The long and winding season will determine where the numbers go, but there aren’t as many top-level goalie mainstays vying for this role like their used to be. Otter is in a similar situation to Miro, with the committee’s paying more attention to newer candidates. He’ll have to compete with some prime candidates like Ilya Sorokin from the Island of New York, as well as Thatcher Demko backstopping Vancouver’s squad. While it’s more stopping pucks and making saves, Jake’s got my vote without shaking hands and kissing babies.

Dallas Stars Election Season: Roope Hintz for Selke

If Roope can notch a few more shorthanded beauties like he did Saturday against Nashville, he could end the year with a silky Selke on his shelf. One of the underrated yet overutilized facets of Roope’s game is his 200-foot prowess. His elite speed and ideal frame make him tough to keep the puck from, allowing him to create rushes with sound defensive play.

Roope puts up enough offensive output to garner looks from voters, but team success this year will show how foundational he is to the core identity of the team. Now that he’s conquered the haircut curse, he’ll get even more voter turnout than the fringe consideration he’s gathered the past few seasons.

Dallas Stars Election Season: Conclusion

All politics aside, the Stars can’t win every trophy on the shelf at the conclusion of the season. No matter how deserving we may feel they are, there’s too much parity in the league for them to monopolize the post-season awards. Point being, when you start the season on a win streak it feels like you’re never going to lose again.

The season will have ebbs and flows, ups and downs, tosses and turns, with inevitable streaks of losing or winning similar to any campaign. This microburst of success shows the team’s ability to play to the level it takes to win the awards associated with their names above, ultimately leading to the success of this team in the long term. While Pete DeBoer currently has a 4 year term to fulfill, early returns indicate that Dallas residents will be chanting DeBoer for President before long.