Honka, Johns fail to crack Dallas’ defense

Looks like the Dallas Stars’ blueline is pretty much set.

On Monday, the club reassigned five blueliners to AHL Texas: Mattias Backman, Ludwig Bystrom, Esa Lindell, Stephen Johns and Julius Honka.

The latter two are the most notable.

Johns, acquired from Chicago in the Patrick Sharp trade, said he was ready to make the leap to the NHL after spending the last two years in AHL Rockford.

The 23-year-old was held in high regard by the ‘Hawks, who took him 60th overall in 2010 — Johns is big (6-foot-3, 229 pounds), showed good offensive upside with the IceHogs (21 points in 51 games) 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.

Honka, the 14th overall pick in ’14, had a nice rookie campaign in AHL Texas — 31 points in 68 games as a 19-year-old — and showed enough maturity to challenge for a spot this season.

But in the case of both Honka and Johns, contractual statuses played a role.

Both were able to be sent down to the AHL without waivers, unlike the eight d-men Dallas still has up with the big club: Jordie Benn, Jason Demers, Alex Goligoski, Jyrki Jokipakka, John Klingberg, Patrik Nemeth, Johnny Oduya and Jamie Oleksiak.

Scroll Down For: