Stars 2000 draft evaluation

By Courtney Wagner

Of the 10 players drafted by the Dallas Stars in 2000, three have seen NHL action, combining for 116 games between them (an average of 12 NHL games per pick in the class). The Stars first round selection, Steve Ott, is the only draft pick who has emerged as an NHL player so far. Goaltender Dan Ellis, with one NHL win under his belt, is a prospect currently with the Hamilton Bulldogs, along with seventh-round surprise Antti Miettinen who recorded one goal in 16 games played with the Stars.

Steve Ott, C – 1st round, 25th overall (OHL – Windsor Spitfires)
Status: NHL Player
NHL Games Played: 99

In 2000 the Dallas Stars selected Steve Ott 25th overall in the first round. In the 2000-01 season with the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL, he had a 50-goal season, recording 87 points and finished the year with a +40 rating. He was also a member of Canada’s silver medal-winning team at the 2002 World Junior Hockey Championships. Ott joined the Stars in the 2002-03 season for 26 games with three goals and seven points. The following season he played 73 games with the club, posting two goals, 12 points and a team high 152 penalty minutes.

A hard working, determined player, Ott is an agitator on the ice and is not afraid to throw his weight round, but he has sometimes been criticized for making poor decisions. In January of the 2003-04 season he was fined $1,000 after he received a charging major and a game misconduct.

Ott joined the AHL Hamilton Bulldogs for the 2004-05 lockout season and recorded 18 goals and 39 points in 67 games and also led the team with 279 penalty minutes. He had 20 penalty minutes and zero points in the playoffs before the Bulldogs were eliminated in four straight by the Rochester Americans.

Dan Ellis, G – 2nd round, 60th overall (USHL – Omaha Lancers)
Status: NHL Prospect
NHL Games Played: 1

With their second pick in 2000 the Stars chose goaltender Dan Ellis. Ellis had a stellar year with the Omaha Lancers of the USHL in 1999-00, posting a record-setting 11 shutouts in the league and receiving the honors of being a first team all-star, goaltender and player of the year.

In the 2003-04 season Ellis split his time between the Utah Grizzlies of the AHL, the Dallas Stars, where he won his only NHL game played, and the Idaho Steelheads of the ECHL. He was named playoff MVP of the playoffs after the Steelheads captured the Kelly Cup.

An agile, butterfly-style goalie, Ellis is a strong competitor with good focus and composure. He played the 2004-05 season with the Hamilton Bulldogs, mainly as a backup to Montreal prospect Yann Danis, where he had a 2.77 goals against average, a .908 save percentage and one shutout. He did not play any games in the playoffs as the Bulldogs were eliminated in four straight.

Joel Lundqvist, C – 3rd round, 68th overall (Sweden – Vastra Frolunda Juniors)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

Joel Lundqvist was the 68th overall selection, which the Stars received from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for Manny Fernandez and Brad Lukowich. Lundqvist has played his entire professional career in Sweden for Vastra Frolunda. He enjoyed his best season in 2002-03 where he was second in team scoring with 17 goals, 37 points in 50 games and his 113 penalty minutes were the most for any player on the team. In 16 playoff games he had six goals and nine points to help his team win the league championship.

Lundqvist put up less than stellar numbers this past season, posting seven goals, 19 points and 38 penalty minutes in 50 games.

Alexei Tereshenko, C – 3rd round, 91st overall (Russia – Dynamo Moscow)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

With their second choice in the third round the Stars chose Alexei Tereshenko from Russia. He has played six years with Dynamo Moscow, but has never put up huge numbers for the organization. Tereshenko has steadily increased his point production over the years, but saw a decrease in numbers this season, posting three goals and nine points in 31 games. His 2003-04 season was his most productive where he had eight goals and 19 points in 47 games.

At 5’11 and 172 lbs., he is on the small side and would need to improve on his size and strength to make it to the NHL.

Vadim Khomitsky, D – 4th round, 123rd overall (Russia – HC Moscow)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

Vadim Khomitsky was the first and only defenseman selected by Dallas in 2000. He has played for CSKA Moscow for the last three years and has put up similar numbers in each of the three seasons. In 60 games in 2004-05 he had one goal and six points. The one area his numbers did jump was in penalty minutes where he had the second highest total on the team with 103, putting him behind Calgary’s Oleg Saprykin.

Known as an aggressive physical defenseman, Khomitsky would need to bulk up and improve his defensive play in order to have a shot at playing in the NHL.

Ruslan Bernikov, RW – 5th round, 139th overall (Russia – Khabarovsk Amur) Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

Ruslan Bernikov was a fifth-round selection in the 2000 draft, going 139th overall. He was picked because of his size, 6’3 and 216 lbs., and potential talents. Bernikov has yet to show the desire it would take to see him make it to the NHL. He split his time between Tolyatti Lada and Cherepovets Severstal in 2004-05 and had 12 goals and 18 points in 49 games.

Artem Chernov, C – 5th round, 162nd overall (Russia – Novokuznetsk Metallurg)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

Artem Chernov was the second fifth rounder for the Stars. His numbers have faltered since putting up 15 goals and 32 points with Novokuznetsk Metallurg in 2000-01, but since then has played a different role that has limited his chances for offensive contributions. He played six games with Moscow Spartak this past season with no points and played 20 games with HC Minsk of the Belarussian League, recording eight goals and 17 points.

Ladislav Vlcek, RW – 6th round, 192nd overall (Czech – Kladno Poldi)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

Ladislav Vlcek, the only Czech selection by the Stars in 2000, was the 192nd pick overall. He played for the gold medal-winning Czech Republic team at the 2001 World Junior Hockey Championships and has been noted for having good speed and agility, but he has not developed much in the last five years. In 2004-05 he split time between two teams, most recently HC Olomouc, where he had three goals and 11 points in 30 games.

Marco Tuokko, LW – 7th round, 219th overall (Finland – TPS Turku)
Status: NHL Bust
NHL Games Played: 0

A mainstay on TPS Turku in Finland since 1998-99, Marco Tuokko was the 219th overall selection in the 2000 draft. A hard-working team player, Tuokko will do the little things for his team. He was a member of the Finnish team at the 1999 WJCs. Despite his hard work on the ice, it is unlikely Tuokko will lace up in the NHL. In 37 games with TPS Turku in 2004-05, he had seven goals and 13 points.

Antti Miettinen, LW – 7th round, 224th overall (Finland – HPK Hameenlinna)
Status: NHL Prospect
NHL Games Played: 16

Antti Miettinen was the Stars last selection in 2000, but has turned into one of their top prospects. A product of HPK Hameenlinna in Finland, he was a top scorer for the team in 2001-02 and 2002-03, posting at least 50 points in both seasons. He played 16 games for the Stars in 2003-04, recording his first and only NHL goal and spent the rest of his time with the Utah Grizzlies, where he had seven goals and 30 points in 48 games.

Miettinen has enjoyed much success playing in and for his native Finland, both at the junior and senior levels. He was also awarded the Lasse Oksanen Trophy as the Finnish Elite League’s best overall player in 2002-03. A polished two-way player with good vision and strong playmaking skills, Miettinen has shown progression over the last five years and is now a top prospect for the Stars. In 2004-05 he played 35 games with the Hamilton Bulldogs of the AHL, scoring eight goals and 28 points.

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