Last September, we wondered if John Klingberg could price himself out of Dallas after Dougie Hamilton signed a seven-year, $63-million contract in July with the New Jersey Devils. That appears more likely after the 29-year-old Stars defenseman admitted on Saturday his frustration over his stalled contract talks.
Klingberg addressed a report claiming he requested a trade earlier in the season. “That’s not entirely true,” he told reporters, explaining general manager Jim Nill gave his camp permission to speak with other teams. “It’s not like I’ve been going out there and asking, ‘I want to get traded now,’ or something like that,” said Klingberg. “It’s something that’s been going on with the negotiations and stuff like that.”
Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek reported Klingberg seeks an eight-year, $63-million deal. He also said the blueliner’s agent asked Nill if he would accommodate a trade for his client if an agreement couldn’t be reached on a contract extension.
Klingberg indicated he hoped to sign an extension before the start of this season as other teammates had done. However, management hasn’t budged off its initial offer despite his camp pitching different dollar numbers and years.
Cap Friendly shows the Stars have $57.1 million committed to 12 players for 2022-23, with $17.9 million invested in rearguards Miro Heiskanen, Esa Lindell and Ryan Suter. The Athletic’s Saad Yousef pointed out they must ensure sufficient cap room to re-sign players such as Denis Gurianov this summer and Roope Hintz and Jason Robertson in 2023.
The ongoing uncertainty over Klingberg’s future in Dallas could stoke speculation over whether he’ll be shopped by the March 21 trade deadline. It could happen if the Stars are out of playoff contention by then.