Shortly, perhaps before training camp opens next week, Jason Robertson will sign a new contract with the Dallas Stars. Once he does, the Stars will likely have to shed salary to become cap compliant when the season opens next month.
NHL teams can exceed the cap by 10 percent during the off-season. Cap Friendly shows the Stars are under the $82.5-million ceiling by $6.3 million with the 23-year-old Robertson still to sign.
Matthew DeFranks of The Dallas Morning News speculates Stars management could reach an agreement with Robertson on a three- or four-year bridge contract. The restricted free agent winger completed his entry-level contract and is coming off a career-best performance of 41 goals and 79 points.
DeFranks believes Robertson could get $7-million annually on his new deal. That'll push them over the cap and force them to ice a smaller roster to start the season or trade someone like Anton Khudobin or Radek Faksa.
Faksa is signed through 2024-25 with an average annual value of $3.25 million. On Aug. 30, The Athletic's Saad Yousef suggested the 28-year-old center as the more likely trade candidate as he had more value than Khudobin. Nevertheless, he also pointed out that Faksa hasn't played well in recent years.
Khudobin has more name recognition given his heroics backstopping the Stars to the 2020 Stanley Cup Final. The 36-year-old goaltender has just one year left on his contract with a $3.33-million cap hit but he's also coming off hip surgery. Still, he might draw interest from clubs seeking short-term help between the pipes this season.