3 Dallas Stars Who Won't Survive the Trade Deadline

With the NHL trade deadline less than a month away, don't count on seeing these three Stars in Dallas after March 8.
Craig Smith is one of three Stars who won't survive this year's deadline.
Craig Smith is one of three Stars who won't survive this year's deadline. / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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It feels like the 2023-24 NHL campaign began just yesterday, but this year's trade deadline is already less than a month away.

Dallas Stars fans are excited to see what the franchise does ahead of the March 8 deadline. After all, the Stars lead the Central Division with a 34-15-8 record as of Feb. 21. They're also tied for the fourth-best Stanley Cup odds on FanDuel Sportsbook, solidifying their status as one of the NHL's best teams.

Nevertheless, the Stars must clear up some roster space if they hope to make some deadline moves. CapFriendly lists Dallas as only having $1.52 million in cap space remaining and that's with Evgenii Dadonov on the long-term injured reserve.

With that in mind, here are three Stars who likely won't survive March's trade deadline.

1. Craig Smith, RW

After splitting the 2022-23 campaign between Boston and Washington, veteran forward Craig Smith inked a one-year, $1 million contract with the Stars during the offseason. Although he's no longer in his prime, Dallas still hoped that Smith could be a solid contributor on the bottom two lines.

Instead, Smith has been largely invisible throughout the season. The 34-year-old winger only has seven goals and four assists through 52 games, putting him on pace for 16 points if he doesn't miss another game for the rest of the season. He's also only logging an average of 10:08 time on ice, which is the lowest on the Stars by more than two minutes.

Judging by his usage, the Stars don't think too highly of Smith and chances are he won't be re-signed this summer. You're never going to get a haul for a player of his caliber, however, moving him before the deadline does free up a roster spot that Dallas can use to bring in a better player.

Considering how playoff-bound teams like to deploy gritty veterans, I'm sure there's at least one team out there willing to take a swing on Smith.