Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Dallas Stars Game 7: The Good and the Bad (With Pictures)

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Dallas Stars 4-1 loss at Detroit Red Wings
Shots: Dallas 26, Detroit 27
PP: Dallas 0-5, Detroit 1-6

The Good:

Kari Lehtonen- You can look at the score and say he let 4 goals in, but a deeper look will reveal that three of the goals were on defensive mistakes. Datyuk picked Jordie Benn’s pocket behind the net and fed the puck to a wide open Filppula in the slot on the first goal. Brunner was left alone standing in front of Lehtonen and he deflected the puck into the net. The last goal was scored when Datsyuk drew two players out of position and commanded the attention of four Stars. Daley didn’t forget about covering Filppula, but Filppula slid back just enough to get open and one-time the pass from Datsyuk into the net. The second goal was scored at the end of a 5-on-3 on a one-timer from Zetterberg in the circle to Lehtonen’s right. He made a huge point-blank stop on Abdelkader early on and robbed Filppula twice in the game. One of the saves on Filppula I still can’t figure out how it wasn't scored, and the other chance was when Lehtonen stoned Filppula on a breakaway.
Abdelkader's chance. you can see Robidas and Smith both covering Cleary which provided the open ice for Abdelkader.

Unbelievable stop on Filppula, still not quite sure how it didn't go in.

Toughness- The Stars finally showed some toughness, but it didn’t get them far. The Stars hadn’t taken part in a fight this season until the opening faceoff and Nystrom went at it with Tootoo. Tootoo won that fight landing a few punches and pulling Nystrom’s jersey over his head. Dillon picked a fight with Tootoo 16 minutes later and landed a series of five straight uppercuts before they both resorted to a few missed swings and lots of body shots. Robidas had a huge collision with Eaves that sent both players flying. The hits were 18-17 in favor of Detroit but both sides made their physicality felt more than the numbers indicate.
Nystrom's fight with Tooto off the opening faceoff.

The biggest hit/collision of the game.

One of Dillon's five consecutive uppercuts.

Penalty Kill- there’s good and bad here. The Stars don’t want to test their penalty kill this much, but on the other hand they sure are doing great. They gave up a goal at the end of a 5-on-3 which can’t really be too much to point to there, but besides that, they held strong. They blocked numerous shots and took away many passing lanes well.

This set up is what the Stars have been rolling with on their current penalty kill streak. 

Zetterberg's 5-on-3 goal with the help of Cleary screening Lehtonen.

The Bad:            

Penalties (especially in offensive zone)- I am at a loss for words with this. The trend continues. The Stars took 6 penalties, not including the two fighting majors. Wandell, Jamie Benn and Whitney took all of their second period penalties in the offensive zone. Those penalties drive coaches (and fans) mad. There’s no need for it. It’s one thing it it’s an iffy call, but these were two high-sticking penalties and a hooking penalty that gave the Red Wings momentum and eventually a goal.

Defensive coverage- I went over this in the Kari Lehtonen paragraph. Too many miscues and mistakes in the defensive zone. Three goals came directly from those mistakes and don’t forget all the chances created by their mistakes that Lehtonen bailed them out on.
Filppula's first goal. He had way too much space out in front of the net.

Filppula's second goal. He slipped back and away just enough to get the space he needed to put the one-timer behind Lehtonen.

Brunner's goal. two Stars were in front of him. His stick wasn't tied up, he wasn't being hassled, nothing. He was left to tip the puck home.

Filppula's breakaway chance at a hat-trick stopped by Lethonen (look for the puck going 5-hole).

Back-to-back ineptness- Continuing the trend from last season, the Stars cannot win back-to-backs for whatever reason. At least they usually win the first game, but this time around they lost both. Not sure where the effort was against Columbus Monday, but hopefully it wasn’t being reserved for the game against Detroit because if so, that backfired. The Stars have 7 more back-to-backs this season, starting on Friday and Saturday with a home-and-home against the division-rival Phoenix Coyotes.

Power play- in the 3rd, it was just embarrassing. Couldn’t even enter the zone. Before that, the Stars struggled but managed to enter the zone a few times, but when they did, they lost the puck on their first move or first pass and had to chase after the clearing attempt. On the power play at the end of the 1st period, the power play looked good. They moved the puck well, moved it constantly and managed some good looks for shots. But then on the 5-on-3 they only managed one good shot.

Ryder had this chance late on a power play, but it rang off the post.

Not much room for the Stars to do anything on the power play. The fact they got this set up on a power play was a good sign. Most of the night they couldn't even enter the zone with possession.

Icings- I felt like there were way too many icings and not just that, but they mostly seemed to be unnecessary and mindless. They didn’t immediately result in a goal against but icing kills momentum and forces extra work just to get out of the zone and get a change in.

Lines seen tonight:

PP- Eriksson-Whitney-Ryder-Daley-Larsen
PK- Fiddler-Garbutt-Robidas-Dillon
PK- Fiddler-Nystrom-Robidas-Dillon
PK- Benn-Eriksson-Daley-Benn
PK- Wandell-Smith-Robidas-Dillon
PK- Benn-Eriksson-Benn-Larsen
3-man PK- Eakin-Dillon-Robidas
3-man PK- Fiddler-Benn-Robidas (elongated stay on ice)
3-man PK- Nystrom-Benn-Robidas (elongated stay on ice)

Notable Notes:
  • Richard Bachman was brought in to replace Lehtonen with 4:30 left in the 3rd period.
  • Derek Roy was out with the groin injury while Vincour was a healthy scratch and Sceviour was sent back to the AHL.
Eriksson's goal came on a rebound off of Howard's right pad on Eakin's shot.

The Wizard's photo bomb streak remains!

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