The latest in a series on some of the top prospects of the Dallas Stars looks at center Devin Shore, a second round pick in 2012.
Shore is coming off a strong freshman season at the University of Maine. He led the Black Bears in scoring with 26 points (6 goals, 20 assists) in 38 games. His 26 points ranked third among all freshmen playing in Hockey East.
“It was awesome. I really enjoyed it. We obviously didn’t do as well as a team as we all would have liked, but I learned a ton from the coaching staff,” Shore said. “It’s a great place to play, the fans are incredible and I was given a good opportunity to play right as a freshman. Except from the lower number in the win column, there were no complaints from me.”
It was a tough season for Maine, which went 11-19-8 on the season and scored just 77 goals (2.03 per game). Shore, as a freshman, scored or assisted on a little more than one-third of the team’s goals. His 20 assists were almost double than the next highest on the team (11).
He finished particularly strong, registering points in 12 of his final 15 games and picking up 17 points (4 goals, 13 assists) during that stretch.
Shore, who turned 19 last month, was one of three players the Stars selected in the second round of the 2012 NHL Draft. The Ontario native, taken 61st overall, is a crafty, creative offensive player who thinks the game well. He’s more of a playmaker than a goal scorer, but he does have a nice scoring touch, and he’s responsible defensively.
“He’s a talented kid. He had a good first year at Maine,” said Stars assistant GM Les Jackson. “He’s got his life together. He knows what he wants educationally and what he wants to do in hockey.”
Shore was selected in the 2010 Ontario Hockey League draft, but opted to pass on playing major junior and decided to go the college route, believing that path was best for his development.
“I was a late bloomer, I was pretty small in my OHL draft year. I know that college gives you that little bit of extra time to get bigger and stronger,” Shore said. “One of the downsides of college is you play less games, but at the same time you are working out during the week. When the guys in major junior are playing all those games, I am able to work out. I actually gained a few pounds throughout the season, which usually doesn’t happen.”
The 6-1 Shore, who said he was 184 pounds at the beginning of last season, was up to 196 pounds in early July when he attended the Stars’ development camp in Frisco.
The education aspect of college was important as well to Shore, who is majoring in finance. He’ll return to Maine this season and Shore is looking to build on the confidence he gained during his freshman campaign.
“I want to make some gains physically, improve my skating and just go in and play with more confidence,” Shore said, “demand the puck on my stick and take more of a leadership role. Step outside my comfort zone and believe in my abilities.”
Added Jackson: “I suspect he’ll make a big step forward on their team. He’s one of their go-to players I am excited about this kid. He’s got a real passion to be a Dallas Star.”
Devin Shore’s 2012-13 statistics