Although the official rosters aren’t expected to be released until tomorrow, Stars GM Jim Nill told reporters, including Matthew DeFranks of the Dallas Morning News (Twitter link) which four players will not be on their roster. Those that won’t be making the trip to Edmonton are goalie Colton Point, defenseman Dillon Heatherington, plus forwards Joel L’Esperance and Rhett Gardner.
Point spent most of his sophomore professional season with Idaho of the ECHL where he posted a 2.86 GAA with a .898 SV% in 20 games. However, even with him being cut, Dallas will be taking four goaltenders with them into the bubble. As for Heatherington, this was the first time in three seasons that he didn’t see any NHL action. Instead, he played exclusively with AHL Texas where he had 14 points in 59 games.
L’Esperance has been one of the top scorers in Texas in each of the last two seasons so his exclusion is a little more surprising. He finished second on the team in scoring this year with 25 goals and 15 assists in 58 games while chipping in with a goal in three contests with the big club. Gardner just wrapped up his first professional year and while he only had 24 points in 55 games with Texas, he did manage to get into eight games with Dallas.
The cuts mean that a pair of their top junior prospects, defenseman Thomas Harley and center Ty Dellandrea, will go into the bubble. They are the most recent first-round picks of the Stars and while they may not play, they will benefit from being around the team, especially with the start of the 2020-21 season at the lower levels still in question.