|Maxime Fortunus (Credit: Steven Christy)|
I caught up with Texas Stars GM Scott White Tuesday afternoon after the signing of Maxime Fortunus was announced. We chatted about that and also some of the roster openings still remaining in Texas.
On his overall thoughts on the signing:
"Obviously Max had options. He's at a point in his career where there are family and financial decisions. At the end of the day, our offer was very competitive, a two year AHL contract. He knows where he'll be for the next two years. He will go to Dallas in camp and do his best there."
"You never know whatever occurs down the road in terms of needs for the NHL. He still has that, but he has family and [job] security issues. With his kids and wife, they are very comfortable in Cedar Park. It's a great place to live. His oldest is five or six and getting into school. Max can solidify himself in this area with this deal."On whether the two year term played a big factor in the decision to sign in Texas:
"I think term was there, but there were other offers out there and he was very comfortable with the Texas and Dallas Stars. He's been with us for a long time and knows what we're all about. He's been a big part of our success from a depth perspective. He's been a big part of our success, and he's a good leader, good for the younger players on and off the ice."White has only signed one other two year deal, with Landon Wilson in the first season. WIlson didn't play the second year when he was injured. White isn't worried about that with Fortunus:
"Max is a fit guy. He was dinged up a bit last year, but it wasn't because he wasn't a fit athelete. I think he'll come back in even better shape this year."On PTO signing and development camp attendee Brendan Ranford:
"He's a player that is going to have to establish himself. He has pace and skill, but he's a little undersized. He plays the game the right way, but it's really in the player's hands to take advantage of the opportunity. He's got to be ready when the time comes. Mike Hedden went through it when he joined up. Ranford had a good development camp but so did a lot of other guys. It was more about getting them introduced to the Dallas Stars as an organization."
|Austin Fyten (Credit: Idaho Steelheads)|
"You know me, I always like to have more depth and a lot of different guys. If we can tweak it a bit by adding more depth and players that spend time in Idaho, that's what we'll do. If it's a player who can add depth, there's a long time between now and the end of the regular season so you never know. If the right player is out there, we may add that player. Other than that we are pretty good with numbers right now."On reaching out to some of the PTO/ATO players from last year like Ryder, Fyten or Johnston:
"I evaluate those case-by-case but right now I'm running with the status quo. Obviously Brad Ralph is working with a lot of players because many fall through the cracks with finding AHL jobs. I'm constantly talking, emailing and texting player reps to see who might still be available. You keep your eyes open. The players that you mention, I don't see them in the mix at this juncture. "On getting the core players and the coaching staff back in Texas for a second season:
"It's a good core group and I like that we're brining some youth into it as well. Now the coaching staff just has to manage them accordingly over the schedule and put the team into the playoffs. It's a long year and it's all about guys managing and taking advnatage of opportunities. That's what you need in a dev setting."
"Willie and Doug will be prepared and the players will compete. The coaches believe that the work ethic needs to be top notch and that will give them a great chance for success."