Breaking: Dallas Stars Complete Another Blockbuster Trade For The High-Rated Free Agent…

Breaking: Dallas Stars Make Key Move Ahead of NHL Free Agency…

The Dallas Stars’ offseason decisions will be pivotal for their future success as NHL free agency kicks off on July 1. Here’s a look at the significant free agent choices facing the team.

Unrestricted Free Agents

Chris Tanev Acquired at the trade deadline, defenseman Chris Tanev quickly bolstered the Stars’ defense. Despite the team’s overall improvement, old issues resurfaced during the Western Conference Final. Tanev has expressed a desire to stay in Dallas, but his contract demands could be substantial.

Joe Pavelski After 18 years in the NHL, including five with Dallas, forward Joe Pavelski is likely headed toward retirement. His influence on the team and its young players is immense, but his departure will create a gap. Captain Jamie Benn will assume the role of elder statesman, and the team will need to find another top-six forward. Pavelski’s exit could open opportunities for Logan Stankoven and Mavrik Bourque to join the NHL full-time.

Matt Duchene Veteran forward Matt Duchene, who signed a one-year deal with the Stars, tied for third in points with 65. He has expressed a desire to return, presenting another critical decision for the front office.

Jani Hakanpaa Defenceman Jani Hakanpaa missed the final months of the season due to a lower-body injury. A staple on the third defensive pairing for three years, the Stars must decide whether to retain him or seek a veteran upgrade.

Craig Smith Smith, who provided veteran depth on the bottom lines, saw his playing time decrease as younger players took over. It seems likely he will play elsewhere in 2024.

Scott Wedgewood Backup goalie Scott Wedgewood has shown professionalism and work ethic, stepping in during injuries. Despite his improvements, Dallas may look for a more seasoned veteran to support Jake Oettinger.

Sam Steel Center Sam Steel settled into a fourth-line role, finishing with his second-best career performance. At 26, he fits with the young core and could be worth retaining if the price is right.

Alexander Petrovic After spending most of last season in the AHL, defenseman Alexander Petrovic became a key playoff contributor due to injuries, marking his return to the NHL after five years.

Derrick Pouliot Pouliot played sparingly in recent seasons, appearing in five games for Dallas without playing in the playoffs.

Restricted Free Agents

Nils Lundkvist As a restricted free agent (RFA), defenseman Nils Lundkvist’s rights are held by the Stars unless they decide not to match an offer from another team. He played in 59 regular-season games but did not feature in the series against Edmonton or Game 6 against Colorado.

Thomas Harley Defenseman Thomas Harley, also an RFA, completed his first full NHL season with notable regular-season success, finishing second among Dallas defensemen with 47 points. However, his production waned in the playoffs.

Ty Dellandrea The 2018 first-round pick had a career year in the 2022-23 season but struggled for ice time this year. As an RFA, the Stars need to decide if Dellandrea can be a permanent fixture in the lineup or if they need to explore other options.

Matt Murray Goalie Matt Murray, who started four games for the Stars over the past two seasons, is 2-2 overall with a shutout against Minnesota. At 26 and an RFA, Dallas must determine his future role with the team.

These decisions will shape the Dallas Stars’ roster and impact their success in the coming seasons.

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