PHT Morning Skate: Yep, Patrick Sharp’s Stanley Cup photos with his kids are adorable

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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.

OK, so this is actually field hockey related, but still pretty wild stuff about Cuban players defecting. (AFP)

Continuing with the theme of “peripherally about hockey but mostly about another sport” reads, check out this fascinating story about AVM, the company that in many ways spearheaded baseball’s stats movement. Hey, there’s at least a mention of Corsi. (Grantland)

The oral history of Lou Lamoriello’s New Jersey Devils’ days is absolutely worth a read. (The Hockey News)

Twenty-one things to note from Steve Moore’s Smashfest IV, which happened this past weekend. (Sportsnet)

A profile of Gilles “Bad News” Bilodeau. (Greatest Hockey Legends)

Is it time for the Edmonton Oilers to find a new captain as Andrew Ference fades from relevance? (Oilers Nation)

ESPN’s Scott Burnside is the latest to take a stab at the “who missed the playoffs last season but will make it in 2015-16?” question. (ESPN)

Get this, these photos of Patrick Sharp, his children and the Stanley Cup are awfully cute. Shocking, right?

Arbitrator hands Chiasson $1.2M contract

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Typically speaking, players and teams that file for arbitration are able to agree to terms on their own before the deadline, but that wasn’t the case with Alex Chiasson.

Sunday morning an arbitrator decided for both sides what Chiasson will make in 2015-16 and the new contract is valued at $1.2 million, per the team’s website. That’s a victory for Ottawa as it was requesting a salary of $1 million compared to Chiasson’s filing at $2.475 million.

The 24-year-old forward was coming off of his entry-level contract. He had 11 goals, 15 assists, and 67 penalty minutes in 76 contests last season. That’s down from his 35-point rookie campaign in 2013-14.

Chiasson was acquired along with Alexander Guptill, Ludwig Karlsson, Nicholas Paul, and a 2015 second rounder (Mackenzie Blackwood) in the Jason Spezza trade with the Dallas Stars last summer.

PHT Morning Skate: Seguin, Del Zotto and Stifler

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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.

Not many people saw Lou Lamoriello’s Devils departure coming, but New Jersey fixture Ken Daneyko basically says “called it!” (Newark Star-Ledger)

Looking at hockey players who pulled the John Elway: retiring after they won a Stanley Cup. (ESPN)

It sounds like video game announcer is a tough side gig. (Sportsnet)

Elite Prospects is already a great resource, but it is now distinguishing itself by compiling women’s hockey stats. (The Hockey News)

Apparently Tyler Seguin and Michael Del Zotto are making a cameo in “Goon 2,” which also reminds the Dallas Stars of Mike Modano’s Mighty Ducks appearance:

Dallas d-man Johns, acquired in Sharp trade, says he’s ready for the NHL

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Patrick Sharp isn’t the only former Blackhawk looking to make his mark in Dallas.

Defensive prospect Stephen Johns, acquired by the Stars two weeks ago in the Sharp deal, is looking to make his big-league debut next season and challenge for a spot on the blueline.

“I am just going to be like every other guy here, battling for a spot, competing and doing whatever I can,” Johns said, per NHL.com. “Personally, I think I am ready, but it’s not up to me.

“I am going to do the best that I can, play the best hockey I can and try to impress them.”

Johns, 23, was held in high regard by the ‘Hawks, who took him 60th overall at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. He’s big (6-foot-3, 229 pounds), showed good offensive upside in Rockford this year — 21 points in 51 games, missing time to a knee injury — and garnered some consideration as a darkhorse candidate to step in on Chicago’s defense in the playoffs, following Michal Rozsival‘s season-ending ankle fracture in Round 2.

A broken forearm kept Johns from making that leap, but a new opportunity came calling two weeks ago when he and Sharp were flipped to Dallas for Trevor Daley and forward Ryan Garbutt.

Dallas’ blueline is hardly set in stone; while the likes of John Klingberg, Alex Goligoski, Jason Demers and Johnny Oduya are all experienced NHLers, Johns should (theoretically) compete with fellow youngsters Patrik Nemeth, Jamie Oleksiak, Jyrki Jokipakka and ’14 first-rounder Julius Honka for minutes.

It also remains to be seen where Jordie Benn, who struggled mightily last season, fits into the grand scheme of things.

Stars’ Hemsky can already ‘feel the difference’ from hip surgery

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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.