Through 44 games the Dallas Stars sit at 26-13-5. They have 57 points, they're third in the Western Conference and first in the Pacific Division. San Jose and Los Angeles sit a full 10 points back this morning, the Ducks are closer with a few more games played and curiously the Coyotes are only six points away with a game in hand.
If you say you saw any of that coming four months ago you're either lying, drunk, or illogically predisposed to be eternally and foolishly optimistic in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Being closer to the end of the season than the start now, we find our expectations changing as fans. We've been holding our collective breath, waiting for the whole house of cards to tumble and now they're so far into it that we're not so sure it's going to tumble after all.
There is, of course, LOTS of hockey to play. So let's not get too far ahead of ourselves. The second half schedule is a lot more challenging than the first.
Nevertheless, let's ask the question: What, in your estimation, constitutes success for this team now that they've made this much progress? Have your expectations changed?
At the beginning of the year the overwhelming majority of Stars fans said "Making the playoffs." That's where the bar was set. Where has it moved to now?
I told the DBD writers privately the other day that "If they score a single goal in the playoffs I will spray my house down with champagne and go to Disney World," which is to say that just making the playoffs is where my own personal bar is still set. Where's yours?