It’s not the splashy move some expected, but Dallas addressed its goaltending situation on Wednesday in a trade with Arizona.
Justin Peters, a journeyman vet with over 80 games of NHL experience, is on his way to the Stars in exchange for minor-leaguers Brendan Ranford and Branden Troock. Dallas also landed AHL d-man Justin Hache in the deal.
Peters, 30, has spent the majority of this year with Arizona’s affiliate in Tuscon, appearing in just three games with the Coyotes. His best NHL campaign came back in ’13-14 with Carolina, when he made 20 starts and finished with a .919 save percentage.
It’s unlikely the Peters acquisition will change much for Antti Niemi and Kari Lehtonen. Peters largely a third-stringer at this point in his career, despite serving as a backup for a few seasons. Still, any news on the goalie front in Dallas will raise eyebrows, especially since the Niemi-Lehtonen timeshare has been erratic since GM Jim Nill devised it two years ago.
As for the other pieces in the deal, Ranford could be the most curious. Last summer, Nill identified him as one of the Dallas prospects “everybody wants.”
“We’ve got four young defensemen, five or six young forwards,” Nill said, per NHL.com. “We’ve got three or four guys in the top-20 scoring [Travis Morin, Brendan Ranford, Jason Dickinson] and another guy who’s out for the season in Devin Shore who was leading the league in scoring.
“When I talk about trades, when we got to make trades, that’s who everyone wants and I’m not giving them up. That’s too big a part of our future.”
Ranford, 24, has appeared in one game for the Stars, spending almost all his time in AHL Texas. He had an impressive campaign in ’15-16, finishing with 19 goals and 59 points in 76 games.