This was supposed to be a game the Dallas Stars could use to bounce back from a sub-par effort last week, after surrendering two third period goals and losing in the shootout once again on Saturday night. Yet just like we've seen time and again this season, the Stars were lacking in nearly every fundamental category and allowed the Hurricanes to jump out to a three goal lead just 12 minutes into the game. Even against the supposedly worst team in the NHL, that's a tough deficit to overcome.
The Stars almost made a game of it, getting the score to within one after Brenden Morrow's second period power play goal made it 3-2, yet the Stars were unable to generate much pressure without the man advantage. When the Stars needed a strong start to the third period, they wind was taken out of their sails when Tuomo Ruutu's centering pass deflected off of Loui Eriksson and past Marty Turco. It gave the Hurricanes a two-goal lead once more and restored the momentum they had temporarily lost. The Stars managed just two shots on net in the third until finally coming alive in the final minutes of regulation. Eriksson scored with less than a minute remaining to make it 4-3, yet an empty net goal sealed the deal for a Hurricanes upset.
In the end, Carolina was the better team on the ice in every aspect of the game. How the Stars respond tomorrow night against an incredibly disciplined Atlanta Thashers team will really give us a sense as to what this hockey team is all about.
Defending Big D LIVE held a special post-game show following the loss to the Hurricanes. For detailed thoughts from the DBD crew and a breakdown of the game, visit our show page for Defending Big D LIVE.