Hockey Fans, yesterday Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk gave us a sign. That sign said "I read and enjoy the commentary on Six Six Hicks."
Why, we hear you asking?
Adam Pardy, Vernon Fiddler, Radek Dvorak, Michael Ryder, Jake Dowell, and Sheldon Souray. Six free agents. That's just biblical right there.
But seriously, holy signings Batman.
We're making a pledge here and now to profile every member of the Stars' roster (and some brief prospect profiles) by the time the season starts up again, so for right now we'll go signing by signing and add our commentary.
Adam Pardy - Defenseman - 2 years / $4 million
The money here is a head scratcher, but given the fact that the Stars were $10 million under the floor at the beginning of the day, it's understandable that they overspent a little bit. According to the Razor Boy and his new Twitter, Pardy started out his career as a "deer in headlights" defenseman which brings up glaring red lights shaped like the outline of a Matt Niskanen defensive error. Luckily, though, he finally realized that he's 6'2" and 206 pounds and started to use it.
What Makes Us Hopeful: He's got the size and a short term deal.
What Makes Us Worried: Several Flames fans identified him as the worst Flames player on the ice on several occasions.
Potential Nicknames: Pardy Time, Excellent, Wayne, Garth
Vernon Fiddler - Center - 3 years / $5.4 million
At the beginning of the day when the first three signings came out, it was extremely worrying that Vernon Fiddler was being called the best Stars deal of the day. Luckily, GM Joe got busy and found others to throw money at, so we can finally see the Fiddler deal as what it is: Smart. Damn smart. Fiddler was one of the best faceoff men in the league last year and has a penchant for killing penalties.
What Makes Us Hopeful: Oh hey! Faceoff wins!
What Makes Us Worried: The biggest of three signings including Adam Pardy and Radek Dvorak, which makes up the terrifying "Didn't he used to play for Nashville or something?" line.
Potential Nicknames: Roof Man, Raise the Roof, Mini-Me, Little Bit of Country, Garth
Radek Dvorak - Right Wing - 1 Year / $1.5 million
When this deal went through, we immediately consulted the Oracle formerly known as Wikipedia thinking to ourselves "Oh hey didn't this guy hit 30 goals at some point in his career?". Our answer was that yes, he did score 31 one year. The problem? That was 11 years ago with New York. His highest total since then was 17.
What Makes Us Hopeful: We mean... it's a veteran to play on the fourth line we guess. That and his one year deal means we have someone to keep a portion of Jamie Benn's cap hit warm for next summer.
What Makes Us Worried: He's on the wrong side of 35, which means he's lost a step when he only had about three to give.
Potential Nicknames: Devo, Whip It, The Eradekator, Garth
Michael Ryder - Right Wing - 2 Years / $7 million
Now this is what we're talking about. To start the day Stars fans were foaming at the mouth for some premier free agent talent and we finally got it after a few hours. We were at the Stars development camp today when we read that this deal had gone through and took no shame in the fact that we let out a very audible "hah!" while Bob McKenzie delivered the twitter goods.
What Makes Us Hopeful: Never scored less than 30 points in his career, Stars have a great pedigree of adding players from cup winning teams.
What Makes Us Worried: There have been several worries about work ethic over the years, worries that are made more worrisome by the fact that he's going to have a rookie coach behind the bench.
Potential Nicknames: KITT, Hasselhoff, Goldilocks, Garth
Sheldon Souray - Defenseman - 1 year / $1.65 million
There are two words to describe this signing and they are "Studly Wonderbomb". We're not going to lie, we weren't crazy about this signing. But then we realized that Dallas is A.) going to have a new powerplay quarterback with a cannon that could shoot right through Wolverine's skeleton and B.) is going to be one Angelica Bridges stronger.
What Makes Us Hopeful: Dude's got a howitzer.
What Makes Us Worried: He scored 19 points last season. In the AHL.
Potential Nicknames: Studly Wonderbomb, Garth
Jake Dowell - Center - 1 year / $800,000
This is, bar none, our favorite signing of the day. The reason for that odd claim? This signing is just bursting with the hard-working aroma of last summer's Adam Burish signing. Mostly because Dowell was Burish's teammate both in Wisconsin and in Chicago, but partly because, as this heart-wrenching THN interview details , Dowell is probably the de facto Stars candidate for the Masterton Trophy this year. He's been through hell in his life and he's done the incredible by making it to an NHL roster. That is exactly the kind of player that needs to be in the Stars locker room.
What Makes Us Hopeful: This might just define the term "heart and soul player".
What Makes Us Worried: Let's be honest, we aren't expecting 20 goals. The only worry we have is that he'll lose his work ethic, and we just don't see that happening to a guy whose been through so much.
Potential Nicknames: The Dowell Jones Industrial, Garth
Stay tuned for the start of the Player Profile series.