Goaltender Marty Turco will be a free agent this summer. According to the Dallas Morning News, Stars general manager Joe Nieuwendyk has said that the team won't re-sign the veteran netminder after nine seasons in a Stars uniform. Atlanta Thrashers cast-off Kari Lehtonen, who arrived in February, will likely be the team's top goaltender next season.
SB Nation's Stars blog, Defending Big D, has reaction:
We say sorry to you, Marty Turco. In a different time, with a different owner and a lot more cash, maybe a tandem system could have worked. Or maybe management would have felt the need to make a clean break either way, and move on.
The divisive goaltender spent years trying to answer questions about early exits from the playoffs, even while setting franchise records in the process. He finally answered his playoff critics, shutting the Canucks out three times in the first round in 2007, then brilliantly backstopping them to Game 6 of the 2008 WCF against Detroit, only to lose defensive veterans Zubov, Norstrum and Boucher the following season. Those losses, coupled with a new crop of young defensemen greatly changed Turco's circumstances, inducing a two year slide that led to the Kari Lethonen trade, and Marty's official exit today.
We wish him luck wherever he lands. (Hopefully somewhere out East.)
Turco is at the finish line of a four-year contract that he signed in 2006, an extension that prevented him from hitting free agency that year. The 34-year-old played 509 games with Dallas, picking up 262 wins, a.911 save percentage and a 2.31 goals against average.