Projecting the Texas Stars Defensive Lines for the 2011-2012 Season

By Chris Ransom

The Texas Stars are the Dallas Stars AHL partner and the farm team that has upcoming players on the Dallas Stars.  The Texas Stars play in the American Hockey League which is a subsidiary developmental league to the NHL.  Today I examine the three defensive lines for the Texas Stars.

The Texas Stars line 1 unit should feature Brad Lukowich as the teams top defender.  Lukowich is a two way defender who is more of a defensive defender.  Lukowich is better on defense than he is on offense.  Lukowich posted 27 points and 23 assists so he can be an effective two way defender, but he is more of a defensive defender based on his defensive attributes.  Lukowich is aggressive, he body checks well, good defensive awareness, is a very disciplined player, blocks shots, and is a decent stick checker.  The other line 1 defender is  Maxime Fortunus as the teams top defender.  Fortunus is a quality two way defender who can excel in the AHL for Texas.

Jordie Benn should be the teams first defender on line 2.  Benn is also a two way defender who is showing promise as a prospect.  He is not going to be NHL ready for at least another 3 seasons.  Jordie Benn has the ability to be a productive two way defender on the first line down the road.  Line 2 will have Philip Larsen playing next to Jordie Benn. Larsen is an intriguing prospect because he is assigned to be a defensive defender for the Texas Stars despite having a better skill set as an offensive defender.  That means that Philip Larsen is a quality two way defender who can play both sides of the puck on offense and defense as a defender.

Dan Spang is a two way defender who is a major work in progress at this point.  Spang will most likely anchor the third line for the Texas Stars.  Brenden Dillon of the Seattle Thunderbirds in the WHL will compliment Spang on the third line.  Dillon is a defender with top notch athleticism.  Dillon is aggressive and disciplined from a defensive aspect.  Dillon got into 9 fights this season.  Brenden Dillon is mainly a defensive defender because he does not offer much from an offensive standpoint besides his shooting power when executing wrist shots and slap shots.

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