But in the larger-term picture of the season, I thought this column by Mac Engel offered some tantalizing quotes from new owner Tom Gaglardi.
While talking about Engel's obsession with landing a Top 6 forward, Gaglardi acknowledged that he believes overall scoring is a team weakness he'd like to address at some point.
"Are we looking at making our team better in the top six? The answer is yes. If that means more payroll, are we prepared to do it? The answer is yes. The question is, what is the cost?"
To clarify for those who are still in a Pacific Division road-start induced haze, in terms of cost, he's talking about assets the Stars would have to give up in order to acquire such a player via a trade. He goes on to talk about how some of the Stars best players are at the dawn of their career, so why would you pick up somebody who wouldn't be around for the long term?
Another quote, the one that got me the most excited. I know he's said things like this before, but I loved the forwardness with which he talks about giving this team the budget to be successful.
"We will be pursuing things. I think we will be active in the trade deadline, and certainly during the summer (during free agency). We are not going to be a floor team (of the NHL's salary cap). We can't be a floor team. We have to be in the middle to a top cap team to be able to thrive in Dallas. We want to be successful and be an elite team and I don't think you can do that and be a floor team. My eyes are wide open about this. If you look at Dallas, we will be rewarded if we are competitive. If we are a so-so, blah team the market has spoken there is not enough interest in following that team."
After the jump, because I know you really want to relive it, more on the Stars loss to the Sharks, Sam Gagner had the biggest night of any NHL player in 23 years and the NHL shockingly admits it screwed up.
- I don't think there's a lot positive to say about that game, so I will sum it up with "Icky" and let Mark Stepneski talk you through it instead. [ESPN Dallas]
- What message are Stars fans to take about this team from the last two games? Even Mike Heika is not sure. [DallasNews.com]
- Brian Boyle er.... Steve Ott scored the first goal on a Sharks goalie in more than four games, so yeah. They've been playing pretty well recently, and that didn't change on Thursday. [San Jose Mercury News]
- In a clear sign of how absurdly bad things got, even the Stars faceoff percentage was pretty abysmal, to the point that it may have been the worst since the lockout (depending if you believe the replies to this fairly authoritative Tweet). [Twitter]
- I will give the Stars credit for trying new things to deal with back-to-backs and travel back from the West Coast. Not that it seems to be working yet, but you'd think if you they keep trying, they'll eventually hit on something that works. [DallasNews.com]
- The one good part about last night's game? Jamie Benn is still awesome. But is he the next Mike Modano? Also, the phrase penalty murder needs to appear next time the Stars score a shortie. [Thursday Morning Cupcheck]
- This story is mostly about Colorado Avalanche teammates Peter Mueller and Erik Johnson who played on the same peewee team as kids. Goalie on that team? One Richard Bachman. [Denver Post]
- Sam Gagner, um, had a good night. A really good night. A night where only the likes of Wayne Gretzky have gone before. [NHL.com/The Copper & Blue]
- In the sad news of the day, Gordie Howe was revealed to be suffering from a condition similar to dementia. [Kukla's Korner]
- I may only be intrigued by this since I'm a refereeing nerd, but I thought Kerry Fraser's observations on the Ottawa Senators-Boston Bruins game was pretty interesting. [TSN]
- Meet the enemy: The Minnesota Wild got only one goal, but that was enough for a 1-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche. I suppose I should just be happy it didn't go to overtime. [Minneapolis Star-Tribune]
- Around the Pacific Division: There a few updates to the saga involving the Los Angeles Kings suspicious clock keeping against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday. First, Kings general manager Dean Lombardi came out with a ridiculous, quasi-scientific, easily deconstructed excuse about what happened. And second, Colin Campbell of the NHL admitted the War Room missed it and the goal should not have counted but there's nothing the league can do about it at his point. [Los Angeles Times/Sportsnet.ca/Columbus Dispatch]
- If you'll be in Los Angeles on Feb. 13 and you want to eat pancakes with Dustin Penner, here's how his raffle is working. I love that the shortlink is actually LAKings.com/Pancakes, and the names of the packages are hysterical. Well played, Kings. Well played. [Mayors Manor]
- As a beer league player myself, this is really awesome. Sure, at its heart, it's a commercial for Budweiser, but it's still an awesome way to go about it.