Jun 29, 2012, 7:48 PM EDT
The Dallas Stars are about to enter an intriguing off-season. Much like the Buffalo Sabres in 2011, they might just rise from budget prison to give their roster some much-needed “oomph.” Yet before GM Joe Nieuwendyk makes any big additions, he’ll need to decide who to bring back.
Obviously, re-signing restricted free agent (and stealth star) Jamie Benn is the top priority. Still, the team has plenty of periphery choices to make – just take a look at their Cap Geek page – and Mike Heika reports that the team will give depth free agents such as Sheldon Souray the chance to test the market.
Stars not expected to make offers to UFAs Souray, [Adam] Burish, [Jake] Dowell, [Toby] Petersen, [Radek] Dvorak before July 1. Door still open once free agncy settles.
Again, Souray stands out in that group because of his flamethrower of a shot, his obvious name recognition and the redemptive season he had in 2011-12. Considering the barren market for defensemen – particularly ones with a standout feature like his slapper – it wouldn’t be shocking if Souray garnered some mid-level attention. Granted, some might look at his time with the Edmonton Oilers (or flaws such as a perceived lack of foot speed) and discount him considerably. Still, it’s hard to imagine him failing to find a spot.
The Stars would be wise to at least consider bringing him back. On a power play that struggled mightily, Souray’s shot was a rare weapon.
Nieuwendyk made a savvy buy-low move when he signed Souray for $1.65 million last summer. If Souray’s contract offers aren’t too far above that, it might make sense for Dallas to give him another try.
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