The first shock of the 2012 NHL entry draft involved the Dallas Stars. The news just broke that Mike Ribeiro is off to Washington, with the Stars receiving center Cody Eakin and a second round pick in return.
Ribeiro played seven seasons of hockey in Texas, and recorded 50+ points in all seven campaigns. As well as the experience he offers, Ribeiro also plays the game of hockey with a lot of flare. He loves to showcase his skills on the ice and a lot of his goals arise from some slick stick handling.
Mike struggled to find rhythm last season, but being an integral part of the Stars franchise since he arrived, he will be missed. Cody Eakin arrives in Dallas as a potential replacement for Ribeiro. He spent the majority of last season playing with Washington’s AHL affiliate team, the Hershey Bears. He was recalled and represented the Capitals on 30 occasions in the 2011-12 campaign and recorded 8 points.
Eakin also had a very successful time playing for Canada at the World Hockey Championships. In a few years time once he has developed his game both tactically and physically, I think Eakin could be a good addition to the Stars roster.
So, what does this mean for the Stars? They now have quite a few picks in the 2012 draft to bring in some young players. However, the fact that they perhaps have a few more picks than they would like, I think a big trade is about to happen to bring a top 6 forward to Texas.
The Stars have been in need of a big scoring forward since Brad Richards departed to New York. Making sure Jamie Benn signs a new contract has to be the first priority for GM Joe, but bringing in a big forward is also high up on the list.
I think I speak on behalf of every Stars fan in thanking Mike Ribeiro for his successful career in Dallas and wishing him the best of luck as he starts a new journey in Washington DC.