Jim Nill is reaching for the stars.
For the third-straight summer, the Dallas Stars general manager pulled off a trade for a premier forward, adding winger Patrick Sharp, along with prospect Steve Johns, from the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday in exchange for defenseman Trevor Daley and pesky forward Ryan Garbutt.
For Nill, it's all part of a master plan, and a commitment to winning from the highest reaches of the organization, as told on the team's website.
You look at what we’ve done now in net; there’s a commitment there. You see what we’ve done up front. And you can see what we are doing with the defense with the young guys coming in. We’ve got to start going in the right direction here. It’s all about winning. This shows a commitment from our ownership. They’ve stepped up here financially. They’ve bought the minor league team. It’s a big commitment they’ve made, the ownership group, to show that we are serious about being a Stanley Cup contender
Still, offense wasn't really the issue for the Stars last season, as the club registered more goals than any team around the league, save for the Tampa Bay Lightning. It was in their own end that they struggled, ranking 26th in goals allowed, a number that largely kept them out of the postseason.
With Daley off the blue line, Nill appears set to rely on a young corps of defensemen to right the ship, with the possibility of new faces yet to be added.
"We’re still looking at a couple other things. Some things might happen. There are some other things out there," Nill said Friday. "But we don’t have to do anything. If there is a situation that arises, we still have flexibility to do things."
The Stars still have more than $6 million in cap space to work with after the trade, and will use every resource at their disposal to ensure a 2016 Stanley Cup playoff spot, at the very least.