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Beat Down in the Desert; Stars Blown Out, 5-2

I'll keep this short and say for those of you who had Dish Network tonight or had some other commitment that prevented you from watching tonight's game, consider yourself lucky.

Because this one was a complete wreck tonight. No, not like back your car into a hydrant and your neighbor's tree right out of the driveway ugly. At least the Stars waited until the second period to let this one get out of hand.

But tonight's game is still a strong contender with the Columbus game from last week for Worst Game of the Year.

Like Ralph said, this one was a manageable 1-0 lead going into the second. But it became 4-0 by the close of the period primarily thanks to horrible defending that constantly left Marty Turco out to dry and left him faultless in my book.

He was probably faultless to a large degree in Marc Crawford's book as the Stars' coach invoked a mercy pulling and got Turco out of there after the 4th goal.

If there is a player tonight who deserves the lion's share of the blame, it's Matt Niskanen, whose matador defending helped set up Lauri Korpikoski's first career NHL goal to open the flood gates in the second. And for good measure, Nisky was a part of that mess of defenders who allowed Adrian Aucoin to step in from the ladies' tees and make it 4-0 just moments after Korpikoski scored his second of the game to make it 3-0.

Sure, give them some marks for not quitting in the third after Zbynek Michalek's marker made it 5-0. But those goals from Brenden Morrow and Mike Ribeiro will simply go down as garbage time goals that nobody will remember from this game.

The only saving grace is that the game was over so early that the Stars, in theory, didn't use up a lot of their energy reserves and will be fresher come tomorrow night. Which if that's the case...GREAT!!!

Because last I checked, the Coyotes don't have a Vincent Lecavalier or a Steven Stamkos on their roster.

We'll have more tomorrow, of course, from our stable of contributors.

DBD's Three Stars:

1. Lauri Korpikoski (PHX) - Funny name. Serious game. At least from the flying Finn tonight with his first two career goals.

2. Scottie Upshal (PHX)- I know why the Flyers made the trade to get him last spring. Still think it was a mistake to let this talented forward go.

3. Matthew Lombardi (PHX) - Some people carved up a Thanksgiving turkey on Thanksgiving Day. Lombardi celebrated this holiday weekend by carving up the Stars' defense with his passing prowess.