Monday, December 12, 2005

Dallas Stars Acquire Another Finn

The Dallas Stars today traded a 2007 seventh round draft pick to the Florida Panthers for 26-year-old Finnish left wing Niklas Hagman. Hagman has disappointed a bit with the Panthers because he hasn't been able to contribute as much scoring pop as they had expected.

The Stars, who are deep at forward and probably could have used some additional depth on defense, likely will utilize Hagman on their fourth line with the likes of Steve Ott, Jaroslav Svoboda and Nathan Perrott. The fourth line won't score much, but it can provide energy, reliable defensive play and an occasional goal. Hagman, with a change of scenery from spending his entire NHL career to date with the Panthers, should be able to provide some more scoring punch on the fourth line.

With centerman Jason Arnott approaching unrestricted free agency next summer and veteran winger Bill Guerin in the second-to-last year of his long-term, big-money contract, Hagman will provide some young depth for the Stars' future. He joins fellow Finns Jere Lehtinen, Niko Kapanen, Antti Miettinen and rookie Jussi Jokinen in Dallas.

The Stars are off to a great start this season, leading the NHL's Pacific Division with a record of 19-7-1 and 39 points through 27 games. We'll have to wait and see if the strong start turns into an even better finish to the season. If Hagman has anything to say about it, the Stars are destined for a great "Finnish"!!


At 11:12 PM, Blogger Lydia Cornell said...

I posted a comment below on your George Bush blog. I really think you have a lot of wisdom -- and I appreciate your comments on my blog.

At 6:27 AM, Blogger Jack said...

You know, growing up in Minnesota, I worshipped the NORTH Stars. Once Norm Green (repeat after me, y'all: F--K NORM GREEN!!) sold his soul to Dallas, it's been difficult for me to get excited about the Stars...though I still admire Mike Modano. Even the 1999 Stanley Cup didn't do it for me.

Two years ago, I even went so far as to go to a Stars game at the AA Center against St. Louis. Still nothing. Perhaps it's just that I hate the Cowboys with such a fiery passion (Roger Staubach to Drew Pearson, NFC Championship, 1975) that it colors my view of everything Dallas.

I wish the Stars well, but since they took my childhood with them when the headed south...well, you get the idea.

It's like former North Stars broadcaster Al Shaver said when Norm Green changed the team's uniforms in Minnesota to the current design: you can be the Stars anywhere, but the NORTH Stars were Minnesota's team.

F--K NORM GREEN. May he roast slowly over an open flame in his own personal Hell.

At 2:23 PM, Blogger DrewL said...

I hear ya, Jack. If I still had been living in Minnesota when the North Stars moved, I'd have felt the same way. As it happened (and I had been gone from Minnesota for almost 17 years by 1993), they landed on my virtual doorstep here in the Dallas area when they moved. I couldn't get in line fast enough for season tickets. I've had them ever since.

I will always have very fond memories of going to North Stars games when I was a kid. My parents had season tickets beginning in the expansion season of 1967-68. As native Canadians, they also had numerous friends playing for the North Stars and on other teams. So we had players over to our house all the time. That was very cool as a 7-10 year old kid.

The 1999 Cup win was simply awesome for me. I enjoyed every second of that Cup run. And I was emotionally - and because of all the OT games, physically - exhausted by the end of it. I even have a Dallas Stars personalized Texas license plate on my car with "99CUP" on it.

I am completely simpatico with you on the Cowboys, though. Can't stand 'em and I never will. Still a die-hard Vikings fan, in spite of the recent Love Boat incident. At least they've turned things around on the field of late!


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