Adam Burish #16 RW
- 28 years old. Will be entering his sixth season of NHL play next year.
- 1 year left on his contract. Restricted free agent in the 2012-2013 season.
- Will make $1.15 million next season.
The Adam Burish effect on the Dallas Stars is, in a word, perplexing. Even though he had peak numbers in many of his offensive stats, he didn't exactly score a lot of goals or garner a lot of assists. And yet, there could be a case made that Burish was one of the most important players on the team.
Coming off a Stanley Cup winning season with the Chicago Blackhawks, Burish was expected to bring a measure of grit and grime to the team. He did exactly that, and more, for much of the season while shuffling between different lines.
He played well through the first few months of the season and had a solid January when he had 5 points in 11 games. He was well on his way to blowing by all of his previous career highs.
That all came to a screeching halt on Feb. 3 when the Stars traveled to Boston to play the Bruins in what turned into a penalty filled game. Three Stars' players (Burish, Krys Barch and Ray Sawada) left the game with injuries. Burish suffered a broken orbital bone after a fight against Andrew Ference. The injury would cost him eight games, a stretch where the Stars went 1-6-1.
After his return, Dallas went on to win six of their next eight games before Burish was once again injured, this time with a stress fracture in his leg. That was another 11 games missed in Burish's season and Dallas sufferered mightily once again without him as they went 3-5-3 in that 11 game stretch. In the 19 games without Burish, most of them during the critical moments of the season, the Stars went 4-11-4.
Maybe he was the glue guy or some kind of key clog guy for the team, who knows, but it was somehow a fact that Dallas played worse when Burish was not in the lineup. The third and fourth lines suffered without him as coach Marc Crawford struggled to find guys that fit well together.
Overall though, he was a good signing for the team and was a solid player when he was healthy. Going into next year, the Stars should probably plan on a few games without Burish. He plays too physical a game, unless his role changes, to make it through a season without trip or two to the injured reserve.
Putting him on lines with guys like Tom Wandell or Toby Peterson makes a pretty effective checking line so they are pretty important for the team. Hopefully the new coach for the team can find a way to keep him healthier for next season.
- +/-: Plus/Minus Ratings
- PIM: Penalty Minutes
- SOG: Shots on Goal
- PPG: Power-Play Goals
- PPA: Power-Play Assists
- SHG: Short-Handed Goals
- TOI/G: Time on Ice per Game