Philly Sports Live

Patrick Sharp relieved trade speculation can end after being dealt to Stars (Puck Daddy)

Patrick Sharp, like everyone else, knew this day was coming, and it was relief when the news finally broke that he was being traded from the Chicago Blackhawks to the Dallas Stars. “I’ve learned over the years not to put too much emphasis or listen to too many rumors, unless they’re coming from Stan [Bowman] or my agent,” Sharp said on a Saturday morning conference call. “To hear the trade talk and the speculation over the past couple of days and weeks was certainly something that I wouldn’t say was weighing on our family, but it was getting annoying to a point, and we just wanted to get something done.”  Sharp, along with defensive prospect Stephen Johns, were dealt late Friday night to Dallas in exchange for Trevor Daley and Ryan Garbutt.  This wasn’t the first time that Sharp has been dealt in his career. In 2005, he was sent from the Philadelphia Flyers to the Blackhawks when he was 23. A decade later, after growing up in the Chicago organization, he leaves a grizzled veteran with 249 goals to his name and three Stanley Cup rings. There were certainly some mixed emotions about leaving, but he’s heading to a team that could be on the rise. “Playing in Chicago against the Stars in the same division, they’re a team that is very tough to play against,” Sharp said. “They’re a team that they’re dangerous in a lot of different ways. To be able to go there and try and fit in with that group is exciting for me.” Sharp won’t be a stranger in the Dallas dressing room. He’ll be joined by former Blackhawks teammate Antti Niemi, his agency mate Jason Spezza, and team captain Jamie Benn, who played with Sharp while both represented Canada at the Olympics and World Championships. It’s not a dismantling, but Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman needed to begin getting his team under the NHL’s $71.4 million salary cap ceiling. Sharp was a prime trade target, along with forward Bryan Bickell, who’s still waiting to see what his future holds. “We did clear some cap space in the process, which is positive,” said Bowman Friday night . “Sort of a dual-purpose move. Will we do other things? I guess it’s possible … We’re getting closer to a point where we can say this is officially our team. But we’re not there yet.” Bowman made this deal as a hockey trade, not one where he was looking to solely free up cap space. They get back a veteran defenseman in Daley who, if sheltered properly, could be less of an on-ice liability than what’s he’s been with the Stars. Also heading to Chicago is Garbutt, who has scored 25 goals over the last two years and could form quite the pesty tag team with Andrew Shaw. On the Stars side, Jim Nill has now made his third consecutive July splash since taking over the GM job in Dallas. In 2013, he acquired Tyler Seguin in a blockbuster. Last summer, he traded for Jason Spezza. Now, he’s picking up Sharp, who could bring 25-30 goals a season. The Stars have certainly turned into that team you’ll settle on while flipping through your NHL Center Ice channels. The offense is attractive. They scored 257 goals last season, second-best in the league. The defense and goaltending (3.13 goals allowed per game, 27th overall), well, they still have plenty questions about them, but Nill has time to continue tweaking this project. “We want to get to be like them [the Blackhawks]. We think we’re starting to approach that 5 or 6 year window where we have a chance to win,” Nill said. “We’ve been fortunate to pick up Seguin and Spezza, they’ve added to our core. And now we’re able to do this trade and pick up Sharp and a good, young prospect to add to the mix.   “We just think it helps get us to that next level where we want to get to.” – – – – – – – Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Sean_Leahy MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY :