Roope Hintz is an important piece for the Dallas Stars and he isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
It was announced on Monday that the Dallas Stars had signed Roope Hintz to a three-year, $9,450,000 contract with an AAV of $3,150,000 through the 2022-23 season.
Hintz was a Restricted Free Agent after completing his Entry-Level Contract.
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After falling short in the 2020 Stanley Cup Final against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Stars understandably want to keep the cast together for another run and Hintz is a vital part of that core.
Leading what was an incredibly strong and important support case, Hintz really emerged as a legitimate offensive weapon for the Stars in 2019-20, and he’s now been rewarded for his considerable efforts.
Let’s delve right in and, as we always do, let’s break the deal down from all possible angles…
After bursting onto the scene with the Dallas Stars in 2018-19, posting 22 points (9 G, 13 A) in 58 regular season games, the stage was set for Roope Hintz to take that next big step in 2019-20.
And, boy did he.
With certain heavy hitters in Dallas’ formidable core blowing hot and cold during the regular season, as always seems to be the case with this team, a new wave of fresh young talent really stepped up to the plate for the Stars when they needed them most, led by Hintz.
Averaging 14:45 minutes of ATOI in 60 games, Hintz was a productive force for Dallas with 33 points (19 G, 14 A), setting new career-highs in all three categories in addition to achieving career marks in power play points (14), game-winning goals (5), Plus / Minus (+3) and shots on goal (120).
In other words, Hintz accelerated his maturation process and became a better player overnight for the Stars, establishing himself as a player who could be used in all and key situations.
Hints wasn’t as hot during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, putting up two goals and 11 assists for 13 points in 25 postseason games, while averaging 13:44 of ATOI.
But, when his team needed him most Hintz came up big, and he proved that he has all the intangibles needed to become a leading contributor for this championship caliber team going forward.
And, able to create a plethora of opportunities for others, a willing shot-blocker and boasting an ability to draw a ton of penalties, Hintz really is a player who does a lot of things well and that only promises good things for the Stars moving forward.
Plus, with Dallas likely to experiment with Hintz as a center in 2020-21, the 23-year-old could be presented with a huge opportunity to really shine with Tyler Seguin expected to miss the first two months of the season if proceedings get underway on Jan. 1, 2021 as is hoped.
Hintz could easily slot into a top-line pivot role for a couple of months at least and, as was the case in 2019-20, it is highly likely that the left shot will only continue to get better and develop into a potential 40-50 point scorer in 2020-21.
Grading The Contract
I would consider this one of those rare great deals for both the Dallas Stars and Roope Hintz given the construction of the contract.
For Hintz, he has been given a significant rise on the $925,000 he was earning as part of his Entry-Level Contract, illustrating the trust that the forward has earned from the Dallas front office.
Plus, if the 23-year-old can carve out another big three years and show considerable improvement from year to year while becoming a polished offensive weapon for the Stars, he will be in line for another big payday after the 2022-23 season when the salary cap situation might be a little clearer and the outlook a lot brighter.
As far as the Dallas Stars are concerned, this is a very smart piece of business without putting them over the cap threshold.
According to CapFriendly, the Stars now have $257,969 in cap space but, with their roster full at 23, they are likely done for this offseason in any case.
The important thing is that the Stars have locked down one of their bright young offensive talents for the next three years at a cost effective number, making the contract a lot easier to deal with if Hintz should regress in any way.
However, based on the last two years alone, it appears that Hintz is only going to trend in the right direction and if he can make that next leap to becoming a consistent top-six performer and a 40-50 point scorer, then an AAV of $3,150,000 will look like a bargain.
Plus, as already mentioned, there could be an opportunity for Hintz to showcase his credentials as a top-line center given that Tyler Seguin is expected to miss time at the start of the 2020-21 season, paving the way for the former to really prove what he’s made of.
Overall, this is already tremendous value for the Dallas Stars and this deal could quickly become an absolute steal if Roope Hintz continues on his current upwards trajectory.