Can Dallas turn it around in 2013-14?

Can Dallas turn it around in 2013-14?
August 11, 2013, 8:00 pm
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2012-13 Record: 22-22-4, 48 points 

Where they finished: 5th in the Pacific; 11th in the West; 29th in NHL

Coach: Lindy Ruff (1st season)

Key additions: C Tyler Seguin, RW Valeri Nichushkin, RW Rich Peverley, D Sergei Gonchar, C Shawn Horcoff

Key departures: RW Loui Eriksson, Eric Nystrom 

Projected lineup 

Forwards

Jamie Benn – Tyler Seguin – Rich Peverley

Ray Whitney – Shawn Horcoff – Erik Cole

Cody Eakin – Vernon Fiddler – Valeri Nichushkin

Antoine Roussel - Brett Ritchie – Alex Chiasson

Defensemen

Alex Goligoski-Sergei Gonchar

Stephane Robidas – Trevor Daley

Aaron Rome – Brenden Dillon

Kevin Cannauton – Jordie Benn

Goalies

Kari Lehtonen

Dan Ellis

Our take: It has been five years since the Dallas Stars last made the Stanley Cup playoffs. They set out to change that with a serious offseason overhaul that included a new general manager (Jim Nill), a new coach (Ruff) and a major trade for Seguin, who has the potential to be a franchise player if he matures on and off the ice. 

That’s a lot to put on a 21-year-old, but there’s no question he and left wing Jamie Benn, 24, give Dallas a young, promising front line. 

Nichushkin, an 18-year-old Russian, was the 10th pick in June’s draft and he should play right away. The addition of Gonchar isn’t a long-term solution for the blueline, but it should help steady what was a weak defense in front of Lehtonen. The Stars needed to make a splash and did so this summer. It should be enough to get them back into the postseason.

Offseason Grade: A

Will they make the playoffs in 2013-14: Yes.