Looking up and down the Stars’ roster is a clear mix of veterans over thirty and younger players in their early twenties.
There will also be a blend of older players aging with guys who have seen two to four years of NHL time throughout the lineup.
The Dallas Stars will be heading into the 2021-2022 season as the second oldest team in the NHL. Including being the oldest in the western conference. Joe Pavelski and Ryan Suter are both two of the oldest players in the NHL. Being born in 1984, and 1985 respectively. However, both continue to produce past their ages, and neither has had serious issues in their injury history.
Other guys in their thirties include Jamie Benn, Alexander Radulov, Blake Comeau, and three of their four goalies (minus Jake Oettinger). Ben Bishop is the only one who has seen his play drastically cut due to injuries. Jamie Benn has seen his play decline somewhat since past surgeries after winning the Art Ross trophy in 2015. But he’s proven time after time to turn it up in the postseason.
For the younger guys on the team, there is a plethora of talent there too. The youth movement is led by Miro Heiskanen and Roope Hintz.
Two of the guys in “The Finnish Mafia” are known not only by Stars fans but also across the NHL.
Game seven hero Joel Kiviranta is another part of the Finnish Mafia. Kivi was also one of many injury-plagued Stars on that 2021 club. However, a look at the upcoming schedule is a sight for sore eyes for Stars’ players, coaches, and fans alike.
Heading into his second NHL season, goaltender Jake Oettinger has shown promise on a team with a good problem to have. Also, just because Otter is slated to start the season with the Texas Stars (the American Hockey League/AHL affiliate to the Dallas Stars) does not mean he won’t be a starter before game number eighty-two. Having four goaltenders is ideal for the team with Ben Bishop’s health history and possible trade bait for Anton Khudobin, or to a lesser extent, 2018 Stanley Cup champion Braden Holtby. A starting position has to be earned. Oettinger will have his chance to earn it. Having a solid backup goalie is a position every NHL team wants, too.
Jason Robertson had a promising rookie season with the Dallas Stars. Finishing second overall in the voting for the Calder Trophy. Handed out annually to the NHL’s top-voted rookie. There is a lot of criticism about the Stars and a lack of goal-scoring. If Robertson and the rest of the team can stay relatively healthy, Dallas’ offense might just be underrated.
This season will tell how well this mix of older and younger players will pan out for the Stars this year. But we can say that having guys on the team who can be faces of the future for the next five to ten years is something any team wants to have.
The same can be said for thirty-year plus year old veterans who have been in the league for over a decade.
Tyler Seguin isn’t quite thirty yet, but he is also one of the vets on the team and has a Stanley Cup with the Boston Bruins on his resume from 2011.
He’s hoping to add another ring to his collection with Dallas next summer.
Featured Image: Steve Hamm/Dallas Morning News