Vacation this past weekend got in the way of the timely reporting of these signings. Details below...
Texas got some help from the Dallas Stars over the holiday weekend in the form of free agent signings. A total of three deals that put bodies onto the Stars' roster were sealed up over.
First, the Stars signed a pair of defensemen. Andrew Bodnarchuk is coming in on a two-year deal and Dustin Stevenson on a single year contract. Bodnarchuk is an AHL staple who picked up significant time in the NHL last season with Columbus and Colorado. The Avalanche claimed him off waivers from the Blue Jackets in January and he spent the rest of the season with the Avs. He played on the fantastic Monarchs teams of 13-14 and 14-15, picking up a Cup win with the latter squad. He wore an A for that club as well. I think this is a signing that you see as hopefully better than the Evans signing last season. The deal really didn't work out for either side as Evans was only a part-time player. Bodnarchuk can play 70+ games and even be a reliable vet callup for the big club.
Stevenson played last season with the Stockton Heat and has a Kelly Cup to his name with Reading in 2013. He's 6'3 bruiser in the AHL and will probably draw 6/7 time in the A.
The biggest signing is the addition of Adam Cracknell. He's been in the NHL for the entirety of the last season, but Texas will probably be his home for this coming year. At $325,000 in the AHL, it looks like he's a veteran leadership piece that could see Greg Rallo on his way out of the Stars' plans. Cracknell is most familiar to Texas fans as a top-flight scorer and leadership forward on the Peoria Rivermen (09-13). He later jumped to the Chicago Wolves and Springfield Falcons in the AHL.