Dobber’s Off-Season Fantasy Grades: Dallas Stars

by Dobber on August 11, 2016
  • The Dobotomy
  • Dobber’s Off-Season Fantasy Grades: Dallas Stars

Dobber's off-season fantasy hockey grades – Dallas Stars


For the last 13 years (12 with The Hockey News) I have reviewed each team from a fantasy hockey standpoint, and graded them. My 14th annual review will appear here on DobberHockey throughout the summer. This is not a review of the likely performance on the ice or in the standings, but in the realm of fantasy hockey.



GoneJason Demers, Vernon Fiddler, Colton Sceviour, Alex Goligoski, Travis Moen, Kris Russell


IncomingAdam Cracknell, Dan Hamhuis


Impact of changes – The Stars have $8 million in cap space with Valeri Nichushkin still left to sign, so they could still sign a free agent. But the pickings are slim.

This summer Dallas lost three good, experienced defensemen and replaced them with Hamhuis. Between he and rookie Stephen Johns it will compensate for much of this void, but I worry about the impact on John Klingberg. The star defenseman was able to move forward on the rush at will thanks to his defense partner Goligoski. Will he be able to do the same thing with a new partner? Sure he could. Is that guaranteed? Well, no. And that’s where the nagging tingle at the back of my neck (Spidey sense?) is possibly giving me a warning. Not that a talent like Klingberg is going to go out and get 30 points in 80 games this year. But it would still be a shame if he went from 58 points down to 45, wouldn’t it?

As for the goaltending…you could say that swapping out Goligoski, Demers and Russell for Hamhuis, Johns and Esa Lindell is a downgrade overall and that the goalies will suffer for it…but why say it? The goaltending is terrible. Is this going to somehow make it…more terrible? Come on, Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi have been through enough! Lay off! Think about the children!


Ready for full-time – Brett Ritchie probably would have made the team last year were it not for wrist surgery that he had last September that took him out of the lineup until December. He then played for AHL’s Texas for three months, getting back into the swing of things. He had 28 points in 35 games before getting called up in March for eight games with Dallas (one point). He fills out the top nine nicely and by the end of the season we could see him implanted on the second line. I have him for 21 points this season, but that’s a conservative number that could certainly go higher if he gets the right opportunities. (Read up on Ritchie here)

Esa Lindell is a talented puck-moving defenseman who came over from Finland last season and promptly posted 42 points as an AHL rookie. After Klingberg the bottom drops out pretty quickly for Dallas when it comes to offensive defenseman, so the opportunity is there for Lindell to make a quick impact. (Read up on Lindell here)

Stephen Johns is a hulking 6-4, 225-pound defenseman who the Stars got along with Patrick Sharp in one of Chicago’s salary-dump trades. Although in the long run he may be a consistent 25-point, 120-PIM player, the early look at him indicates that he won’t give us much of either during his first several years in the NHL. (Read up on Johns here)


Fantasy Outlook – Dallas is a good team with a great group of skaters and a deep NHL roster. And terrible goaltending. But this team will put a lot of points on the board and have a good list of players worthy of owning in fantasy hockey. The prospects pipeline will leave something to be desired once you remove Ritchie and Lindell from it.


Fantasy Grade: B (last year was B+)



Pick up the 11th annual DobberHockey Fantasy Hockey Guide here (available now for immediate download)


Get the Fantasy Guide and the Prospects Report as part of a package and save$7.00 – here!



Offseason Fantasy Grades: Anaheim Ducks

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Arizona Coyotes

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Boston Bruins

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Buffalo Sabres

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Calgary Flames

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Carolina Hurricanes

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Chicago Blackhawks

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Colorado Avalanche

Offseason Fantasy Grades: Columbus Blue Jackets


8 responses to “Dobber’s Off-Season Fantasy Grades: Dallas Stars”

  1. isle b. says:

    Not to stir up trouble but I wonder what the criteria are for these letter grades. For my money, the Stars would seem to be one of the best, if not the absolute best team in the league to build around; a slew of high-octane offensive players with a coach that espouses a wide-open style and yet they get a B; meanwhile the Blue Jackets who are a team that would seem to be one of the worst teams in the league to build around as, aside from Seth Jones and a couple of good not-great forwards, have very little headline-grabbing players and a coach, in Torts, notorious for running his players into the ground in a season-long war of attrition. And yet they get a C.

    • Dobber says:

      You’re probably right. Criteria is just my gut, so waking up on one side of the bed gets a team a B, waking up on the other side gets them a B+

      In hindsight, I would probably nudge Dallas up to a B+ and CBJ down to a C-.

  2. Chris Folk says:

    You mention Lindell as most likely to make the jump – what about Julius Honka? Is he the better long-term own offensively?

    • UKflames says:

      I am also surprised that Honka got no mention, especially as he got such a glowing write up in the prospects guide.

      • Dobber says:

        Do you think the Stars roll with three rookie defensemen then? Or that they send down Johns or Lindell?
        Honka won’t make the team this year. I know the FPR said otherwise, but that one got by me as the editor. Should have said ‘cups of coffee, fulltime next year’

  3. NHLGodfather says:

    Dobber…A little light on the Stars analysis. I was looking forward to your take on the forwards and projected lines. Is Nischnushkin the real deal with a lot of bad luck so far, or is he a NHL bust in the style of a Yakupov? Is the 35 year old Sharp still a high value fantasy asset maybe good for 55+ points? What about a Vrbata FA signing or is he asking too much?

    • Dobber says:

      I rarely get into the line combos because it’s more of a macro approach to the team in general and where they are heading. But Nichushkin is the real deal, Sharp is not 55+ anymore IMO and I don’t see Vrbata going there but it’s possible.
      The Fantasy Guide digs deeper into the one-year outlooks

    • Paul Evensen says:

      In Dobber’s defense this write-up is just meant to be an analysis of the Stars’ offseason moves, not a thorough analysis of the whole roster’s fantasy outlook and prospective future moves… None of your questions really apply here.