The Dallas Stars announced the recall of two forwards from the AHL’s Texas Stars this morning: Mavrik Bourque and Rhett Gardner.
Additional depth is needed on the team’s roster, especially among forwards, after a two-game suspension for captain Jamie Benn and a potential injury to Evgenii Dadonov could knock them to just 12 healthy forwards available to play. With the AHL Stars’ season ending a few days ago after losing to the Milwaukee Admirals in the Central Division Final, Bourque and Gardner were initially slated to be “Black Aces” for the NHL club. Now, if the Stars face more injury issues today or manage to extend their season, these two may be thrust into unexpected playing time.
Bourque, a 21-year-old out of Plessisville, Quebec, continued a solid first pro season in the Calder Cup Playoffs. He contributed one goal and four points in eight playoff games, finishing tied for tenth on the team in playoff scoring. His offensive abilities were evident as he tallied an assist in his AHL postseason debut and recorded points in three consecutive games in the series loss against the Admirals.
Throughout his first full professional season, Bourque exhibited strong potential with 47 points in 70 regular-season games, ranking ninth among AHL rookies. He ranked fourth on the AHL Stars in goals and fifth in points, a strong showing after Dallas selected him 30th overall in the 2020 NHL Draft.
Gardner, 27, led the Texas Stars in postseason scoring with eight points in eight games. His offensive consistency was evident as he notched points in six of the eight playoff games, including a five-game point streak to kick off the Calder Cup Playoffs. This was Gardner’s first season since turning pro in 2018-19 that he didn’t see any NHL action.
Gardner posted 10 goals and 40 points in 71 regular-season games from Texas, a solid offensive rebound after a poor showing on the scoresheet last season. The 2016 fourth-round pick has become a solid two-way forward at the minor-league level and remains high on Dallas’ list of call-up options.
Conference sweeps pending