Not surprisingly, Shane Doan tops the list, but some other intriguing options remain. For example…
Petr Sykora: Played for peanuts last year in his return to the NHL following a season in Europe. The 35-year-old Devils winger proved he can still put the puck in the net, scoring 21 goals during the regular season. However, he struggled to produce during the playoffs, spending time in the press box as a healthy scratch. Sykora has said he wants to return to New Jersey, but so far hasn’t been able to reach a deal.
Kristian Huselius: The 33-year-old winger missed all but two games in 2011-12 – the first 25 he was recovering from pectoral surgery, the last 55 he sat out with a groin tear. Obviously his health is a considerable concern (groin injuries can be especially tough to heal), but Huselius is a six-time 20-goal scorer that could presumably be had for cheap. If he can pass a physical, it might be worth rolling the dice.
Tom Kostopoulos: Another 33-year-old, though a very different player than Huselius. Kostopolous is a tough bottom-six forward that played 81 games for the Flames last season, scoring four times and dishing out 124 hits. He’s not too bad with his fists either. Just ask Kevin Bieksa.
Fights, hits and a blown kiss: Stars and Blues get nasty
Sometimes a final score is misleading. In the case of the St. Louis Blues’ 6-1 thrashing of the Dallas Stars, it might just be the start of the story.
Honestly, the most positive thing the Stars can say is “Well, at least it was just one game.”
It was one ugly game, however, and now the Blues hold a 2-1 series lead with a chance to really take control if they can win Game 4 at home.
The Blues dominated just about every category on Tuesday, firing more shots on goal, enjoying better special teams play and throwing more hits. They even blocked a higher number of shots, which often isn’t the case for the squad that carries play.
This leaves the Stars picking up the pieces, especially when it comes to their work in their own end.
Do you put greater blame on struggling goaliesKari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi or is this more about the Stars’ lax defensive coverage? The scary answer may be “Both,” and the Stars likely know that they need to find answers quickly.