The latest in a series on some of the top prospects of the Dallas Stars profiles forward Devin Shore, who had a spectacular start to his first pro season before being sidelined with a shoulder injury.
Shore recorded 26 points (15 goals, 11 assists) in 23 games with the Texas Stars and was tops in the American Hockey League in goal scoring and third in points when he went out with the injury in December.
“Very, very impressive,” said Dallas Stars assistant GM Les Jackson. “Just looking at his numbers he produced in the time he played, had he stayed healthy who knows where he would have ended up in the scoring race.”
The 21-year-old Shore, who is listed at 6-1, 205 pounds, is a left-shot center who got some looks on the wing this season as well.
“We played him at wing a lot this year because of the number of people we had at center, which he accepted as good experience,” Jackson said. “He looked at it is if I can play two different positions it gives me a better chance to move ahead.”
Shore, a second-round pick (61st overall) in the 2012 NHL Draft, turned pro this past season after three years at the University of Maine, where he registered 104 points (34 goals, 70 assists) in 112 games, leading the team in scoring each year. He was an alternate captain as a sophomore and was captain as a junior.
Shore made the decision to turn pro after his junior year at Maine, and he joined Texas late in the 2014-15 season, playing 19 regular season games and three in the playoffs. He credited that experience with helping him get off to a good start when he turned pro full time in 2015-16.
“Those 19 regular season games and some playoff games at the end of [the 2014-15 season] in the AHL really helped,” Shore said. “They got me familiar with my teammates down in Texas and got me used to the pace of pro hockey and the structure. That helped a ton.”
Shore scored six goals in his first three games in 2015-16 and earned a call-up to the NHL in early November after registering eleven points (eight goals, three assists) in his first nine games of the season. The Ontario native joined Dallas in Toronto for a morning skate, but didn’t play that night.
“I’ve never been more excited to be a healthy scratch in my entire life,” Shore said that morning. “I am thrilled to be here and the stars aligned for my first road trip in the NHL to be 30 minutes from my house. I’ll be out of the lineup tonight, but I will be in that building tonight as part of the Dallas Stars as they take on the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s a pretty incredible feeling for me.”
He made his NHL debut the next night in Boston as the Stars defeated the Bruins, 5-3.
“It was a special moment and something no one can ever take away from me,” Shore said. “I had a blast out there, and it was even better that we won.”
He ended up playing three games with Dallas, recording no points and a plus-two rating while averaging 12:07 of ice time per game.
“It was a dream come true. I got a good taste of what it takes to play in the NHL,” Shore said. “It was great to get used to the pace, how strong guys are and how the game is played. I learned a lot. It was a good experience.”
Shore went back to the AHL and continued to play well, putting together a ten-game points streak that ended in a game against Charlotte when he was hit low and upended by Checkers defenseman Ryan Murphy. Shore suffered a shoulder injury that would require surgery. Murphy was suspended three games.
“It was a bad hit,” said Texas GM Scott White. “[Murphy] got three games and Devin got 48 games. It’s a little disappointing, but that is hockey sometimes.”
Shore is expected to be ready to go by the start of next season, but he missed more than half a season so it could take a little time for him to get back up to speed. Still, the Stars have high hopes for Shore, a smart, skilled player.
“He clearly has some high-end offensive qualities that will give him a chance to grow and move forward. Very impressive player,” said Jackson. “He’s all-in. This kid is going to do whatever it takes to be a player. I just think it is a matter of him getting back healthy and getting some games under his belt down there again and get rolling. I see him like [Radek] Faksa. He’ll do whatever it takes to be a pro.”Devin Shore 2015-16 Statistics
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.
|Texas Stars ||AHL ||23 ||15 ||11 ||26 ||+3 ||8 |
|Dallas Stars ||NHL ||3 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||+2 ||0 |