Dallas Stars’ CEO Jim Lites rips Benn, Seguin over recent play

BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Jim Lites of the Dallas Stars attends the 2016 NHL Draft on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Jim Lites of the Dallas Stars attends the 2016 NHL Draft on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Dallas Stars Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jim Lites had some strong words to say about how forwards Tyler Seguin and Captain Jamie Benn have been playing in the past few games.

The waters among the Dallas Stars front office and locker room have been somewhat mellow since the beginning of the season.

Enter Jim Lites, the Dallas Stars’ CEO.

On Friday, Lites had some powerful words to say about Stars’ players Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin.

"“It’s pissed me off,” Lites said about the team’s play to Stars’ media. “What nobody says is what is completely obvious to me: We are getting terrible play from our top two players.”"

Lites continues:

"“If [Benn] and [Seguin] don’t lead, we will not be successful. I think this is the most talented and deep team we’ve had in years here. Tom [Gaglardi, the Stars’ owner] has allowed us to do everything we needed to do to be successful. Whatever it’s taken, he’s done. And I am tired of getting emails from him saying ‘What the hell is going on with our best players?’"

Benn and Seguin have both began the season with slow starts. With the season three games short of halfway over, Benn has just recorded 30 points (15 G, 15 A) in 38 games. Seguin, Benn’s main linemate for much of the season, has 32 points (11 G, 21 A) in 38 games.

"“[Tom Gaglardi] and I see this the same way,” Lites said. “We expect our best players to perform like other team’s best players, to be accountable, to have attention to detail, to have responsibility on the ice and off and get the job done for us. And it’s not getting done. Game in, game out, the best players on other teams are outplaying the best players on our team.”"

Lites also mentioned the importance of Benn and Seguin’s play in relation to their salaries. As Stars ‘SportsDay writer Matthew DeFranks notes, the Stars have spent more than 150 million dollars on the duo in the past years; Benn signed an eight-year deal worth $76 million in the 2016 offseason, and Seguin signed an eight-year deal for $78.8 million before the season started.

"We pay these players to be the best players on our team,” Lites said. “[however] they are consistently out-efforted and outperformed by everybody else’s best players.”"

And although the Stars had recent road success Thursday night in a 2-0 win against the Nashville Predators, it seems like the Stars’ front office in the American Airlines Center is not pleased with the recent play of their superstars. And although it’s not very common for such hefty comments in the NHL, Lites felt that something needed to be said.

"The coach has to, the GM has to, the owner has to, the CEO has to,” Lites said. “I have to fricken hold these guys [accountable] and be part of the process of getting these guys to play to their best."

Looking at the Stars’ past five games

(Note: the home team is on the top, the away team is on the bottom.)

Final. 0. 112. 2. 119

5. 94. 2. 119. Final

98. Final. 2. 119. 1

106. 1. 119. Final. 3

119. 0. 151. Final. 2

Benn has four points (2 G, 2 A) in the Stars’ past five contests. Seguin has two (1 G, 1 A). All of their points came in the Stars’ games against Calgary, Chicago, and Minnesota. Neither of them recorded any points in the past two games against the Islanders or Predators.

The Stars are at home for their next four games, as they’ll host Detroit on Saturday, Montreal on Monday, New Jersey next Wednesday, and Washington on Friday. After the four-game homestand, they’ll head on the road for three games, two of which are against Central Division opponents. You can view their full schedule here.

Dallas is barely inside the playoff picture, as they hold the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot (if the playoffs were to start on Friday) with 41 points. Vancouver is capable of pushing the Stars outside of the playoff picture win a win in Calgary if Dallas loses against Detroit.

Next. Heiskanen making a strong case for the Calder. dark

The Stars currently sport a home record of 11-5-1 and will look to add more games to the win column at the American Airlines Center over the next span of contests.

And with a media bomb like the one Dallas experienced on Friday, a few wins would certainly help the Stars find the stability they’re looking for.

  • Published on 12/29/2018 at 13:10 PM
  • Last updated at 12/29/2018 at 13:10 PM