The hockey season is a little under a month away from being set into full swing. Yet this is an exciting time for the upcoming season. It is time to check in with the Dallas Stars prospects.
The Traverse City Prospect Tournament is upon us and in this tournament, 8-team will be showcasing the NHL’s fresh, young talent. The front office uses the match-ups as a great measuring stick to see where their prospects lie in the means of playing at an NHL/AHL level.
The Stars have assembled a line-up to pull out a victory at this event. With first-round picks that fans haven’t seen much of, such as Ty Dellandrea (2018 Round 1, 13th Overall), to players from the Star’s AHL farm team, like Nicholas Caamano, the Dallas Stars’ management team will be able to have a look at who can help out the Dallas Stars should they get into a pinch later on in the season.
Mike Heika, a senior staff writer for the Stars, tweeted out an expected lineup for Game 1 in Traverse City.
Here is Stars' expected lineup for first game in Traverse City (2 p.m. CDT Friday vs. Minnesota):
— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) September 5, 2019
There are big names on this lineup but there isn’t time to dive into every single player. Instead, let’s talk about 3 players that you should keep an eye on.
Thomas Harley, Defenseman
Thomas Harley was the Stars’ 1st Round draft pick this year at 18th overall. The 18-year-old is 6’3″, 192 lbs and will be playing the 2019-2020 season for the Mississauga Steelheads in the OHL. The Stars may be waiting at least a season to see him play. So this is the first real look the team will be able to get at him, post-draft.
Last season, Harley put up 58 points (11 Goals, 47 Assists) in 68 games. When the team made it to playoffs, Harley had 4 points (4 Assists) in 4 games. Next, he took his talents to the World Junior Classic for Team Canada. He played 7 games with 4 points (1 Goal, 3 Assists).
Harley is a smart cookie. Not only does he see the ice well, but he also avoids making big penalty-attracting mistakes. In all 97 games, he was apart of last season (between the Steelheads and Team Canada), Harley only had 36 PIMs. The Kid skates very well and is more of a pass-first kinda guy, as most defensemen are.
The Stars have amazing defensemen on their roster right now, between guys like Miro Heiskanen and John Klingberg. So this tournament will test if Harley has what it takes to be a top NHL defenseman in the near future. He’s one of the bright stars in Dallas’ future, Traverse City will be just the beginning of this amazing career.
Tye Felhaber, Left Winger/ Centre
Tye Felhaber, who went undrafted, has spent the past seasons playing in the OHL, bouncing between a few teams but mostly stuck with the Ottawa 67’s where he wore the “A” last season. The 21-year-old is 6’0″, 190 lbs and has signed to play with the Stars’ organization for this upcoming season.
Last season was Felhaber’s best yet. In 68 regular-season games, he put up 109 points (59 Goals, 50 Assists) with a +56 rating! Then when the 67’s went into playoffs, Felhaber scored another 28 points (17 Goals, 11 Assists) in 18 games. His game is more offensively driven, he’s more likely to shoot first. Felhaber has yet to see an NHL/AHL game.
In Traverse City, Felhaber is going to have to bring that intensity to standout to the Stars’ front office. He has an abundance of determination and confidence that give him the potential to be a key part of the Texas Stars’ roster. Should things go smoothly this weekend, I would not be surprised to see him up at the NHL level at some point this season.
Emil Djuse – Defenseman
Emil Djuse has been playing in Sweden his whole career so this season will be his first taste of playing in North American hockey. At 25-years-old, standing 5’11” and 190 lbs, this Swede has signed a one-year deal with the Stars’ organization.
Djuse played in the SHL last season for Skellefteå AIK where he put up 22 points (6 goals, 16 assists) in 49 regular-season games with a -1 rating. When his team pushed into the playoffs, he put up another 2 assists in those 6 games but had a -7 rating. He also played 8 games in International tournaments while representing his home country but put up 2 assists in that time. Djuse is more offensively-minded defenseman with great hockey sense.
Although Djuse may need a bit of time to adjust to AHL play, he can do some good for the Stars’ in the long run. Last season, the Dallas team saw a great deal of injury to their defense so having a player such as Djuse for some back-up will be a great safety net.
Featured Image: Luke Durda/OHL Images