It seems like it’s been all about hype and hip surgeries lately for the Dallas Stars.
Ales Hemsky ranked among those who underwent a procedure recently, joining a group that included Jamie Benn this offseason (while Carl Klingberg and Valeri Nichushkin also went under the knife). The 31-year-old raved about his decision to do so to the Dallas Morning News.
“I can already feel I have more motion,” Hemsky said. “It’s just been two months and I know I have a long way to go, but I can feel the difference.”
Injuries have been an unfortunately common issue during the skilled winger’s career, yet he seemed especially hampered in his first season with the Stars.
Despite playing in a respectable 76 games in 2014-15, he was limited to 11 goals and 32 points. Hemsky seems pretty sure that things will go more smoothly next season, at least physically speaking.
As a wild card for a team hoping to make a significant jump after all of those splashy additions, it’s intriguing to note that Hemsky actually welcomes the pressure for next season.
“It’s nice to have hype,” Hemsky said. “If you don’t have hype, you don’t have passion. I like having the passion and expectations.”
Considering his past as a long-suffering Edmonton Oiler, it’s probably a welcome change … but a healthy season would be a breath of fresh air, as well.
The Senators and forward Alex Chiasson are nearly $1.5 million dollars apart on salary heading into Thursday’s arbitration hearing.
More, from the Sun:
Numbers confirmed by the Sun reveal the Senators winger will be looking for the arbitrator to grant him a salary of $2.475 million at Thursday’s hearing, while the club will counter with an offer of $1 million.
Although it’s believed the Senators will win the case, there are, of course, no certainties. And if the arbitrator does rule in favour of Chiasson, the club is expected to try and trade him.
Chiasson, 24, was one of the key pieces acquired in last summer’s Jason Spezza trade to Dallas, but had a disappointing inaugural campaign in Ottawa; he scored just 11 goals and 26 points in 76 games, and was a healthy scratch in a pair of the Sens’ opening-round playoff loss to Montreal.
Still, Chiasson is an intriguing player.
At 6-foot-4 and 205 pounds, he has power forward size and showed potential during his rookie campaign in Dallas, scoring 35 points in 79 games during the ’13-14 season, and two more in six playoff appearances.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Tyler Seguin is supporting Patriots quarterback Tom Brady following his Deflategate suspension. (Dallas Morning News)
If each team had its own Mount Rushmore, who would be on them? (New York Post)
Miles Koules looks to Liam O’Brien for inspiration as the undrafted forward aims to fight his way onto the Washington Capitals’ roster. (CSN Washington)
Corey Crawford brought the Stanley Cup to his old high school. (Puck Daddy)
Jeremy Roenick expects Jakub Voracek to continue to excel after setting a new career high with 81 points in 82 games last season. (CSN Philly)
Viktor Tikhonov, who is making the move from the KHL to Chicago Blackhawks, sees “pluses and minuses” to being a part of a famous hockey lineage. (Chicago Tribune)
Rich Peverley is “still undecided about his future,” according to what his agent Allain Roy told the Boston Globe.
Back in mid-May, the word was that he could still play, although it sounded like the 33-year-old would need to jump through a few hoops to do so. He’s been sidelined since March 2014 after a frightening “cardiac incident.”
Peverley’s three-year, $9.75 million contract expired this summer, with his salary ending at $3.375 million in 2014-15.
One wonders if a team – whether it be the Dallas Stars or someone else – would want to take on the risk of Peverley suffering from another heart-related issue.
There may be some time until the versatile foward would get an answer, anyway, at least if he doesn’t want to make the retirement call himself. We’re at the point in free agency where many hopefuls are likely pondering the unpleasant thought of training camp tryouts and other late fixes.
The odds seem long, but there’s no shame in Peverley refusing to leave any rock un-turned, either.
(H/T to Puck Daddy.)
The Dallas Stars have been busy this summer. However, one of the players they seem to feel so optimistic about heading into the 2015-16 season comes from within their organization.
Valeri Nichushkin, 20, showed plenty of potential in his rookie season with the Stars two seasons ago, scoring 14 goals and 34 points in 79 games. But last season, he played in only eight games and recorded only a single assist.
A hip injury that required surgery greatly disrupted his sophomore season, keeping him out of the Stars lineup from early in November until the beginning of April, when he was recalled for a late push by Dallas to try and make the playoffs.
“We’ve got high expectations for him. He ended up playing in the last four games of the season and it was great to see the chemistry that him Jason Spezza and Ales Hemsky,” said Stars GM Jim Nill, via the Dallas Morning News.
“They played together and it was amazing to watch. We’re excited. We think that they could be something special.”
Earlier this week, the Stars signed Johnny Oduya to a two-year deal worth $7.5 million. Prior to that, they acquired Patrick Sharp from the Chicago Blackhawks.