by Joshua Wattay | Stars Correspondent | Wed, May 10th 2:41am EDT
Ben Bishop was acquired by the Dallas Stars Tuesday, May 9th, in a trade with the Los Angeles Kings. The Dallas Stars must sign Bishop to a deal before he becomes an unrestricted-free-agent on July 1st. (Sports Day Dallas News)
The Stars arranged the trade with the Los Angeles Kings for a fourth-round-pick (114th pick acquired from Montreal for Jordie Benn) in this years draft. Bishop, now 30-years-old, was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy in the 2015-16 season when he was between the pipes for the Tampa Bay Lightening. The Stars are in need of improvement at the goalie position, with Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi struggling to establish consistency in the 2016-17 season. While Bishop will improve that squad, it creates a major cap-space issue for Dallas. Bishop is looking for a large contract, most likely a five to six year deal in the ball-park of 5.5 million to 6 million. If the Stars decide to keep both Kari Lehtonen (5.9 million) and Antti Niemi (4.5 million), then they will face a 13 million dollar cap hit for goal-tending alone. Should the Stars decide to keep Lehtonen, the better of the two between Lehtonen and Niemi, then they will take a 1.5 million cap hit for two seasons. How the Stars go about finding a solution to this monetary problem will most certainly be interesting to say the least. Players rights trades usually end up in contracts and deals, so the expectation at this moment is for Bishop to sign in June and potentially as early as May. Since being drafted by Saint Louis in the 2005 draft, Bishop has only made two postseason appearances in the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons respectively with the Tampa Bay Lightening. With that being said, Bishop was impressive with a 21-13 record to go along with a 2.02 goals-against-average and a .930 save-percentage through 36 postseason contests. The 30-year-old Denver native has had a history with groin injuries in the past, most memorably playing through a torn groin, yes you read that right, a torn groin in the 2015 Stanley Cup Finals. The Dallas Stars have made the first move at improving their goalie situation, but the cap situation must be addressed before it starts effecting needs at other positions on the ice.