Off the ice, the Stars prepare to welcome back Jamie Benn. On the ice, Kari's heroics not quite enough against NHL's best.
First, the good news. Jamie Benn's holdout is over as the Stars officially announced they re-signed the formerly restricted free agent forward to a new five year deal worth $5.25 million per season.
Darryl Reaugh interviewed Dallas Stars President Jim Lites during the second intermission and immediately asked him about the Benn signing.
"This is fabulous news," Lites said.
"The deal basically got done last night and was concluded this afternoon. I'll be a much better marketer with Jamie Benn playing."
Lites also touched on the recent hiring of Mike Modano as Executive Advisor.
"Modano's the face of our franchise. Tom Gaglardi said it best, he's the 'Wayne Gretzky of the Dallas Stars.' He's an icon in our community. It's been a goal of mine from the day I got here to bring Mike Modano back and we found a role that he's comfortable with."
As for the game against the Blackhawks, I suppose you could say the Stars let a 2-0 lead slip through their grasp before falling in overtime to the Chicago Blackhawks. But if you watched that game last night, it was very apparent that the Stars were lucky to have pulled any points out of last night's game.
Last season, the Stars gave up 40 or more shots in just six of Kari Lehtonen's starts. This season, Lehtonen has started three games and has yet to see a game in which he's faced less than 40 shots.
Yes, the season's still young. And at least the Stars don't find themselves in the same boat that the Kings, Coyotes, and Red Wings are currently in. Still, it's a troubling trend that I think we'd all like to see turned in the other direction.
Oh yeah, Jaromir Jagr left the game at some point in the third period and didn't return.
Coming up in this morning's links, we get reaction from DBD's very own Brandon Worley, Mike Heika and Mark Stepneski chime in with their thoughts, and we look at how the enemy (aka, fans of my second favorite team) viewed last night's game.
- With fans clamoring for the Stars to sign Jamie Benn, Joe Niewuendyk opted instead for a patient approach that left little room for negotiating through the media on either side leaving the relationship between the player and the club in pretty good shape. [Defending Big D]
- If you're expecting to see Benn in the lineup against the Blues on Saturday, well, you'll have to wait until Monday at the earliest. Blame the fact he's Canadian and needs a work visa to play in the United States. Both Mike Heika and Mark Stepneski were able to get GM Joe's thoughts on the signing. [DallasStars.com/Stars Inside Edge - Dallas Morning News]
- Sam Fels of the excellent publication The Committed Indian noted that the Hawks did the Stars a favor in the first 30 minutes of tonight's contest by overly relying on the ol' stretch pass to a stationary teammate at the opponent's blue line. Once their wingers started cycling back were the Hawks able to effectively break down the Stars defense to erase a two goal deficit. [The Committed Indian]
- Morpheus at Hockeenight essentially says the same thing. Except he throws out some blame to Trevor Daley circa 2009, who decided to make an untimely appearance tonight in the second period during a Hawk's power play. And there are some really, really bad photoshops. [Hockeenight]
- Finally, the Game in 6 reminds us just how valuable Loui Eriksson is to this hockey team. His last second shorty at the end of the first period ensured that Chicago, and not the Stars, would be the ones to chase the game for the bulk of the final 40 minutes. Without him, the Hawks probably cruise to a regulation win.