Denis Gurionov is staying in Dallas. Earlier this month he signed to an extension to remain a Dallas Star for at least one more year. However, questions remain. This is going to be a “prove it” year for Gury.

Happy birthday, Denis Gurionov! For his present, the Dallas Stars signed the Russian right winger to a one year contract. The then restricted free agent (RFA) learned his playing destination had been confirmed.

Perhaps a coaching change could benefit Gury, and his production on the ice. Dallas is currently in search of a new head coach for this coming season. But the focus on his play has been on him, and not who is at coach. Stars’ General Manager Jim Nill commented on Gurionov’s struggle over this past season.

“It was a tough year for him,” general manager Jim Nill said after the season. “But he’s like a lot of other guys. A lot of other guys had tough years, too. I want to hear what his feedback is, why he thought things happened.”

For Denis Gurionov, it’s about leaving a rough year in the past. Also using this off-season to improve his game, and be more of an offensive contributor on a team hungry to score goals. Gury has been all business, and all about the chance to be better on ice.

“Motivate me to be better, work on some stuff,” Gurianov said. “I was up and down. Going back home, work in the summer and things can get better. It’s hockey and things happen.”

Gurionov hasn’t been pointing fingers, or taking anything that happened last season personally either. “I wasn’t mad at anybody,” Gurianov said. “Like I said, it’s hockey and it motivates me to get better and work on some stuff. I’ve got to be better.”

With his time in Dallas, Denis Gurionov has been compared to Valeri Nichushkin’s time with the Stars. Not only are both guys from Russia, but both at least at times had trouble fitting in on the team. Val left Dallas in 2019, and is now playing for the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche. Denis Gurionov has already played for a Cup for the Stars two years ago, and wants to regain his old form.

Photo credit: Dave Sanford/NHLI Getty Images

Nichushkin showed signs of being great for the Stars in his rookie season in 2014. As did Gurionov. The Stars, however, do not want to see another young player leave Dallas and make a big splash with another team. Perhaps a change in coaching is key to reigniting Gury, and his scoring we saw back in 2020.

Featured photo: hockeysfuture.com

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