Jason Williams, signed to a free agent contract by the Stars, practiced with the team today at American Airlines Center. Williams signed with for the remainder of the season. It's a two-way deal that pays him $500,000 at the NHL level and $105,000 at the AHL level.
Williams, who played with Detroit last season, has been playing with the Connecticut Whale of the AHL this season. He signed a professional tryout contract with the Whale in late December and registered four goals and five assists in 17 games.
"After playing 17 games in Connecticut, I feel pretty good. I am looking forward to getting into the NHL and playing here again," said Williams. "I am just going to come in and play my game. I feel I can read the ice well, shoot the puck. I am going to finish my checks, do my thing and try not to do too much. I am not going to be scoring hat tricks every other game or anything like that, but I am going to chip in as much as I can offensively, work hard and show them what I can do."
Stars coach Marc Crawford said he expects Williams to play on the depth lines, where the Stars have been hit hard with injuries recently. The players called up from the AHL have played well, but Williams brings a wealth of NHL experience.
"He's a nice addition to our group. He gives us some depth and right now we desperately need that," said Crawford. "We're hopeful he's going to help us venture through here. I don't think there is anything but good that can happen from it right now. If he comes in and gives us a boost it's terrific. It's a very inexpensive way to move forward. He's hungry. At this time of the year you're always looking for guys that can add to your energy and he's got a hungry energy that I think can help us.
"When push comes to shove in these intense games, you want guys that have been there before and not guys that you're always having to constantly boost."
A few other notes from today's practice.
The Stars sent forward Francis Wathier back to the Texas Stars of the AHL.
Krys Barch (fracture orbital bone) was placed on injured reserve retroactive to February 3.
Toby Petersen (leg) will not play tomorrow.
"He's getting closer," said Crawford. "He'll practice with us on Monday and we'll see what happens moving forward."