With the season starting in a few days, and some questions still lingering regarding the health of forwards, the Stars have made a move in signing some depth with the acquisition of Lauri Korpikoski.
Official Press Release:
Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the team has signed left wing Lauri Korpikoski to a one-year, $1,000,000 contract.
Korpikoski, 30, appeared in 71 games and recorded 22 points (10-12=22) for Edmonton during the 2015-16 regular season. He averaged 1:59 of shorthanded time on ice per game, which was third amongst team forwards, and 15 of his 22 points came at even strength. He was one of only ten players in the NHL to appear in at least 71 games and have ten penalty minutes or fewer (10).
The eight-year NHL veteran has played for the New York Rangers, Arizona and Edmonton, posting 181 points (78-103=181) in 540 career regular-season games. Additionally, he has appeared in 30 career postseason contests, recording five points (2-3=5).
“Lauri is an experienced, disciplined player and his skating fits in well with our team speed,” said Nill. “He is a versatile player that can kill penalties and he will bolster our forward depth.”
Korpikoski has represented Finland internationally five times including the 2014 Winter Olympics, the IIHF World Championships in 2010 and 2013 and the IIHF World Junior Championship in 2005 and 2006.
The 6-foot-1, 193-pound native of Turku, Finland was originally selected by the New York Rangers in the first round (19th overall) in the 2004 NHL Draft.
The Korpikoski signing will ease the blow of losing Mattias Janmark and Cody Eakin a little bit. Looks like he can fill that void of a left shot forward that can occasionally fill a spot in the top six, but will mostly make his home on the third or fourth line bouncing back between center and left wing. The part of this signing I like the most would be the discipline of Korpikoski, a player who is asked to play a lot of defensive zone minutes has very good discipline and a responsible stick. This will balance out well with the players who take more minor penalties (i.e. Roussel, McKenzie, and Cracknell).
Photo: Bridget Samuels/Flickr