The Dallas Stars made an insane 17-point jump from the 2014-15 year to their Central Division-winning campaign one year past and the thrill-a-minute team is projected for large things from NHL pundits and oddsmakers alike.
The Stars’ 267 targets made them the league’s top scoring team last season and members of this reddish light manufacturing industry will be grinning ear to ear as Dallas looks poised to eclipse that amount furthermore this year, lighting lamps from shore to shore.
The roster is a who’s who of offensive dynamos, such as Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin, Patrick Sharp and Jason Spezza. In addition to that combination for the new season is Jiri Hudler, whom Dallas signed for the paltry sum of $2 million for a one-year stay. How you get a man with Hudler’s offensive chops for that price, I’ll never understand.
The OVER is an ever-popular betting alternative for this team because of that potent offense. 1 year ago, Dallas put together a 45-36-1 O/U mark for totals bettors and the sky is the limit this time around. So skilled is this team that I would not be shocked to observe a six on the board at some point this year.
Still, the Stars play hockey’s toughest division and it’s going to be a dogfight with their fellow Central members all season long.
Here’s a look at where the Stars stand so far as the futures is worried.
Stanley Cup +1200
Dallas will look to improve upon a trip to the Western Conference semifinals last season in which they were eliminated from the St. Louis Blues in seven games. They entered the postseason as the No. 1 seed in the West and did remove the Minnesota Wild in six games in the opening round. Thinking about the dominant everyday life, by no means should the playoffs be viewed at as a loser.
Online store BetOnline currently has Dallas fifth in their Stanley Cup futures board at +1200. It’s not a bad price and certainly not the best value on the plank, but contemplating the likes of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Washington Capitals — who they are likely better than when looking at the teams today — sit facing them, it will look somewhat attractive.
The Stars haven’t won a Stanley Cup since that famous 1998-99 victory but there’s something about this lineup, even though this propensity to give up a few goals at the other end nevertheless succeeds. The team has tasted the playoffs and will be driven to acquire further come playoff time.
Western Conference +650
Dallas has a set of conference championships and to get to this Stanley Cup final, they will have to money this wager first. BetOnline has Dallas at +650, which is second behind the Chicago Blackhawks (+375).
As with any Stanley Cup playoffs, it’s likely to be a grind and the Stars are going to compete with a few more experienced teams, but the gift is indisputable and Benn is establishing himself as a superb captain. We saw that a first-time winner last season; perhaps Dallas is poised to replicate the Sharks’ achievement.
Central Division +325
Despite my compliments for Dallas as a fantastic Cup or conference futures bet, this is the one that disturbs me the most. The Central is such a gifted, deep branch that any one of the groups (save for possibly the Winnipeg Jets, let’s not get crazy here) can top this group come season’s end.
One tendency to note, however: because joining the branch for its 2013-14 year, Dallas has improved its point total each season. The Stars finished with a whopping 109 in 2015-16. If that trend continues, the branch is theirs.
Season Points OVER/UNDER 101.5
Speaking of that trend, this one feels ripe for the picking. As mentioned, this really is a group that is coming off a 109-point effort and has probably gotten BETTER considering adding the criminally underrated Hudler. Not a lot of teams, if any, are going to have the ability to match the breakneck Golden State Warriors-esque scoring pace that Dallas will bring into the ice night innight out. They could give up some targets, but who out there can score six?