The Dallas Stars sport many high-profile players on their team. The likes of Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin, John Klingberg, Alexander Radulov, and Miro Heiskanen easily take up the spotlight with their stunning play and talent on and off the ice.

Naturally, that leaves some players who will go unnoticed and not receive the recognition they deserve. As the Stars come out of the All Star break, it’s time to take a look at some of the key players outside of the Big 5, who played a role in the Stars being primed for a playoff push.

Esa Lindell

Esa Lindell is first on this list primarily because, while Klingberg was out for a month, no one stepped their game up higher than him. The Stars managed to play about .500 hockey while Klingberg missed over a month with a hand injury, something that could prove important as the season dwindles down to the final 31 games.

Currently, Esa sits in 6th place in goals scored for the Dallas Stars, showing his offensive game is improving. Lindell stepped up and not only increased his level of play defensively, but also added more physicality to his game. He gained confidence without his playing partner, which will undoubtedly prove to pay dividends to the final stretch as the Stars will need consistency from their defensemen not only on the defensive end of the ice, but also on the offensive end of the ice.

Roman Polak

Every team needs a player who will punish the other team and wear them down physically every single shift and make sure they pay the price for touching the puck.

Last year, the Stars had Antoine Roussel to fill this role for the team and was able to cash in on the offensive end at times. Unfortunately, Roussel received an offer he could not refuse from the Canucks and took his talents to Vancouver.

Roman Polak, despite his lack of offensive production, has played a very important role as the enforcer of types for this team. His veteran presence and physical play has been an important factor in keeping this team in playoff position and he has proved to be a good partner for rookie Miro Heiskanen.

Notably, per NHL, Roman Polak is 6th in ice time per game on the Dallas Stars. Not many people before the year started would have predicted that to be the case. Hopefully, Polak will begin producing on the offensive end of the ice to push this team into the playoffs.

Tyler Pitlick

The winger has proven to be an absolute steal from two off-seasons ago given his relentless energy and his ability to win puck battles on the wall. He is also consistently on a line centered by Radek Faksa, so he is going against the top line for the other team on a night in, night out basis.

Currently sitting at 7th in scoring for the Dallas Stars, his offensive production seems to come in spurts, including a three game goal scoring streak earlier in the year. It certainly is not for lack of opportunities each game, as it seems he had briefly inherited Tyler Seguin’s post luck, as he is relentless in trying to win puck battles and is not afraid to make his presence known with his checking ability. If he can find a consistent offensive game to match his defense, Tyler Pitlick will be an instrumental key in the playoffs.

Admittedly, a list of three players who have not received enough credit is not nearly long enough. You can make an argument for many other players who have performed well this season and should be recognized for their efforts.

Feel free to voice your opinion, either through Twitter or the comments, and let us know who you think should be recognized for their efforts this season.

Featured Image: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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