Ray Whitney explains why he signed with Dallas

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Jaromir Jagr will probably draw the most attention, but Ray Whitney is just as important to the Dallas Stars’ veteran movement.

Whitney spoke with Edmonton’s 1260 The Team about his decision to join the Stars, which Defending Big D transcribed.

“Obviously the length of contract was important. Dallas offered me two years right away,” Whitney said. “They were willing to give me that kind of commitment. They were the only team that was willing to give me that kind of commitment.”

“Phoenix did offer me a two-year [contract] but not anywhere near financially what the Dallas Stars did.”

Whitney raved about the Stars’ goaltending (aka Kari Lehtonen), stating that piece matters “probably more than anything.”

“You need a goaltender – it’s funny, you say Jamie Benn and Eriksson and we all love that, but the Phoenix Coyotes last year didn’t get to where they were going without Mike Smith,” Whitney said. ” … So all the teams that get anywhere and have any success, it usually starts with the goaltender out and I think Kari Lehtonen is one of the best in the league right now, and there are some talented people up front.”