Sunday, March 17, 2013

Dallas Stars Game 27: The Good and the Bad

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Dallas Stars 8-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks
Shots: Dallas 19, Chicago 34
PP: Dallas 1/2, Chicago 2/6

The Good:

If there is anything, there are negative counters to it. There is nothing worthy of falling under the positive category. After an 8-1 loss, mini-victories aren’t anything to celebrate. Throughout the game, the Stars seemed like they either didn’t show up or they showed up and just were completely dominated. And both of those scenarios are frightening. Chicago is the best team in the league, and they showed it. In every way.

The Bad:

Top 6 finally together, and this is what happens? This was the first game of the season that the Stars had all of their top players together in the lineup at the same time. They only managed 19 shots and 1 goal that was scored on a power play in the third period when the game was 7-0.

Goaltending- Yes, the team in front of Lehtonen and Bachman was terrible, but the goalies both let in some pretty bad ones. Bachman definitely let in more goals than he should’ve had. Toews was simply in great positioning and outdid the defense on both of the first two goals. Lehtonen was a little too slow to cover the puck on the third goal, but then again he did have three teammates around him that could’ve helped a little more. He didn’t see the puck on the fourth goal, but he’s been seeing shots like that most of the season so far. Bachman was a little out of position on Chicago’s fifth goal, but that was more on the people on front. Hossa was left wide open to blast the puck in on a 5-on-3 for the 6th goal. Two shots off the post sent Bachman scrambling and a wide open Keith wristing the puck from the high slot is tough to stop, especially when the shot was going wide until it hit off Jamie Benn’s stick and into the net. Bachman should’ve easily had the 8th goal. Kane’s spin-o-rama did throw him off a little but if Dillon was on him and stuck on him, then Bachman should’ve have been thrown off that much. Add to that the fact that it was a backhand shot from the faceoff dot and it’s should’ve definitely been stopped.  

Special teams- Average? That’s not good enough when you’re playing the best team in the NHL. Yes, they scored a goal on one of their two power plays, but in both they managed only one other shot on net. They killed four of six penalty kills, but they seemed overwhelmed and scampering most of the time. They never managed more than 3 clears and they gave up a shot on goal each time.

Faceoffs- Roy won 6 of 8, Eakin won 7 of 14, Benn won 5 of 14 and Fiddler won 7 of 17.

Lines seen tonight:

PP- Whitney-Benn-Cole-Robidas-Daley
PK-Eakin-Roussel-Jo. Benn-Daley
5-on-3 PK-Fiddler-Daley-Robidas
5-on-3 PK-Eakin-Dillon-Oleksiak

Notable Notes:
Chicago goal #1- Toews enters the zone and his shot gets blocked wide. A behind-the-back through-the-legs pass from behind the net ends up at the left boards. Leddy gets the puck and shoots it on goal. Toews is at the top of the crease to deflect it in.

Chicago goal #2- Toews won a faceoff after a Stars icing. Eventually the puck made it to Keith at the left point. He takes a shot that hits off Saad off to the side of the net. The puck falls to the ice in front of the net where Toews is and he tucks it in for the goal. 

This play resulted in the third Chicago goal. Jordie Benn gambled on skating up and intercepting a cross-ice pass. Instead, it went through him, off the boards and perfectly to where Stalberg can skate in hard on Lehtonen. He took a shot and a scramble in front led to the image below. 

Chicago goal #3- After Stalberg's initial shot was stopped by Lehtonen a scramble ensued for the loose puck. Lehtonen reached to cover it but Leddy popped it into the net before Lehtonen's glove suffocated the puck.

The Blackhawks dumped the puck and Jordie Benn got to it first. Stalberg lifted Benn's stick, and in one motion took the puck and passed it out in front. The puck went all the way to Oduya at the point.

Chicago goal #4- Oduya takes a slap shot from the point and it makes its way to the net, off the post and in. Lehtonen didn't see the puck on this play. Below is the body language that made that evident.

This was the aftermath of the goal. 

Lehtonen was pulled with 11:59 left in the second period. As he headed down the tunnel, he was so angry he threw his stick like a spear.

Chicago goal #5- Hossa entered the zone and made a back pass to Kane at the line. He made a move around Goligoski low in the zone and he passed the puck out front. It went through Robidas' legs and Hossa re-directed the puck in past Bachman.

Roussel and Seabrook fought after Seabrook sent Roussel sliding into the end boards on a rush.

Roussel clearly won this fight, landing several big punches and taking Seabrook to the ice.

On a 5-on-3, Toews had the puck along the icing line to the left of Bachman. He held the puck as Kane skated at the net, occupying Eakin and keeping Dillon low in the zone. Toews then passed to Hossa, who was wide open near the top of the circle. 

Chicago goal #6- Hossa was left wide open to do what he willed and he ripped the puck past Bachman for the power play goal.

Chicago goal #7- Bickell received a pass from Stalberg and he took it to the net. He rang two shots off the left post and the rebound came out front. Keith skated up and wristed the puck on net. It looked like it was going wide, but it hit off of Jamie Benn's stick, past Jordie Benn and over a sprawling Bachman.

Dallas goal #1- The power play wasn't very strong, but they did manage this goal from Daley. Jamie Benn made a nice deke to get into the zone. Jordie Benn then took the puck along the boards and passed the puck behind the net to Whitney. Whitney centered the puck for Cole, but he whiffed and it went to Benn at the point. He passed it over to Daley, who ripped a one-timer into the net.

The Stars scored on this play, but it was disallowed for goalie interference. Nystrom sent a rising wrist shot from the blue line that dipped to get just over Crawford and under the crossbar. 

Another shot of Fiddler ducking to avoid the Nystrom shot. 

Kane scored a goal-of-the-year candidate to wrap up the game's scoring. He skated into the zone with Dillon in front of him. He spun to his left and sent a backhand shot on net.

Chicago goal #8- After Kane's spin-o-rama, he sent a backhander on  net that went past Bachman's glove and into the net.

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