Alex Chiasson scored the winner as the Texas Stars eliminated the Milwaukee Admirals from the AHL playoffs Friday.
It was Chiasson's second game winner in two games as he has continued his stellar offensive play that saw him score six goals and seven points in seven games. Chiasson is worth looking at in deeper pools next season as he is a scorer.
Kari Lehtonen has declined an invitation to play for Finland in the IIHF World Championships.
Lehtonen has a newborn son and he would rather spend time with his family. "I want to take some time off and be a dad," Lehtonen said. "That's exciting. I can start a little earlier to work out and skate and I should be good to go." Lehtonen added that he didn't live up to his own expectations this season. He finished with a 2.66 GAA and .916 save percentage in 36 games.
Coach Glen Gulutzan believes the Stars will be just fine if they leave Jamie Benn at center and not shift him back to the wing.
"Initially, I thought he was a better winger," Gulutzan admitted. "But watching this year, and especially the second half of this year, and we had some little heart-to-heart talks about bearing down at that position, and what I have seen from the back end is he certainly can play center. He's such a smart player, there's no question in my mind he can play that position and be one of the best at it. But it's a process. You can't just take a guy off the wing and stick him at center and say you're going to be a great center. But he's going to be." Benn said he will work on getting better at faceoffs and at playing in the defensive zone, which are very important aspects of the position.
Now that the season's over, Stars coach Glen Gulutzan went into more detail about Jamie Benn's wrist injury.
"Behind the scenes, [Benn] is getting an injection every day to just play, never mind play against the best players and score," Gulutzan said. "He couldn't shoot a puck for the last six weeks, so those are things that are starting to work themselves out. He battled, just like the rest of the guys with injuries, so I'm proud of that." Benn still managed to score 12 goals and 33 points in 41 games, although he did slow down a bit in April.
The Dallas Stars are expected to unveil new uniforms and a new logo in the first week of June.
The new jerseys come one day after recently hired general manager Jim Nill talked about instilling culture change in the organization. While the uniform and logo switches have been planned quite a while in advance, the timing of the news is still pretty remarkable. Let's just hope they're better than that Taurus bull fiasco from a few years back.