Dillon Heatherington didn’t bother filing for arbitration recently and instead has re-signed with the Dallas Stars. The depth defenseman inked a one-year two-way contract with the club that could take him right into unrestricted free agency depending on what happens this season. The Stars would need to play Heatherington in 69 NHL games this season to avoid Group VI unrestricted free agent status next summer. He will earn $700K at the NHL level this season, according to CapFriendly.
The 24-year old Heatherington has played in just 11 NHL games over the last two seasons, but is a key part of the Texas Stars’ blue line. Suiting up 73 times for them in 2018-19 the 6’4″ defenseman recorded 24 points and 75 penalty minutes while wearing an “A” as one of the alternate captains. Texas is likely where he is headed again this season, though he’ll have to clear waivers at the beginning of the season in order to go there.
Originally a second round pick of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Heatherington has not yet been able to crack an NHL roster for very long. He’ll try to make that a tough decision this fall, but it will be difficult. The Stars have several strong options on the left side already, including newcomer Andrej Sekera. If one of them struggles or suffers an injury though, you can bet Heatherington will be one of the first few call-ups.