Texas Locks Down Leadership as Justin Dowling Signs Two-Year Extension with Dallas

(Credit: Texas Stars)
When you have a good one, you try to lock it down. The Dallas Stars did the thing Beyoncé encouraged us all to do today, signing the captain of their AHL squad Justin Dowling to a two-year, two-way extension.

Per Sean Shapiro, Dowling will make $375,000 on his AHL deal, which is the most the Stars have paid a player on AHL contract in team history. It's a sign of how much the Stars value the continuity of leadership that Dowling can provide while also contributing to the scoresheet. Additionally, Dowling has proven that he's got the stuff to play in the NHL when called upon.

With Michael Mersch also signed for next year, Texas has solid scoring and leadership already lined up for next season.

On a personal note, Justin Dowling has always been fantastic to speak with postgame and at practice. He and his wife, who is also from Alberta, weren't sure at first if he would be a long term tenant in Cedar Park. When chatting with him for my recent article on his captaincy, Dowling told me they bought some property in Calgary because they just weren't sure. Seven years on, I think they just might need to look into making a home purchase in central Texas now.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the team has signed center Justin Dowling to a two-year, two-way contract extension, which will run through the 2020-21 season.

Dowling, 28, has appeared in six NHL games with Dallas this season, recording one assist (0-1=1), five shots on goal and six hits. The center has also registered 47 points (13-34=47) in 55 games with the Texas Stars, Dallas' development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). Dowling is tied for 11th in the AHL and leads Texas with 34 assists this season, while he also paces the team with 47 points.

Dowling has recorded three assists (0-3=3) in 15 career NHL games, all with Dallas. The center has also posted 295 points (99-196=295) in 428 career AHL regular-season games with Abbotsford and Texas. Additionally, Dowling has skated in 52 career games in the Calder Cup Playoffs, recording 38 points (11-27=38).

The 5-foot-10, 180-pound native of Cochrane, Alberta was originally undrafted and was signed by Dallas as a free agent on March 26, 2014.