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Dallas Stars Daily Links: What Do We Mean When We Talk About a "Fast Start"?

The Stars want to add a healthy dose of detail work to their established speed and skill this year, writes Mike Heika. Plus, the Texas Stars' challenges in goal, and NHL stars' preferred snacks for speed-eating.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

We all know what we don't want for the Dallas Stars this season. Stumbling out of the gate. Working hard for two periods and fatally dropping their guard in another (you pick the order). Finding themselves behind the 8-ball early and racing (and failing) to catch up. You know...a repeat of last season.

But what does a "fast start" mean in this case? Patrick Sharp, who just won a Stanley Cup and played against the Stars during last year's season opener, shares this perspective:

"We were overwhelmed. They were just skating so fast and playing so well, we figured we weren't at all prepared to start the season," said Sharp, who played with the Chicago Blackhawks at the time and has since been traded to the Stars. "It was like we were playing the best team in hockey."

Of course, the Blackhawks would go on to win that game and eventually become the best team in hockey by winning the Stanley Cup. The Stars would go on to have an inconsistent year with a lot of late-game breakdowns that led to them missing the playoffs.

Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin, who are likely to have Sharp as a linemate this year, are working on a slightly different idea of a "fast start" this year:

"I think we learned from last year that every shift is important," said Stars captain Jamie Benn said. "When we say we want a fast start to the season, I think what we mean is we want a good record, we don't want to get behind. We don't want to look back and say we weren't prepared."

And while emotion and energy and speed are all a part of that, so is control. The Stars in the season opener outshot Chicago through two periods 24-11 and had a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes. But when the Blackhawks pushed back, Dallas struggled. Defensemen took four minor penalties in the third period, Chicago scored on the power play (Sharp, ironically enough) and then won the game in the shootout.

...

"I think we came in last year and we brought in some new players, and we were all excited about that," center Tyler Seguin said. "And then we didn't play the kind of hockey we needed to play."

Mike Heika has much more at his Dallas Morning News blog. You'll enjoy it. [SportsDayDFW]

*****

Derek has the DBD recap of last night's final preseason game against the Chicago Blackhawks. We may be a little nervous about our Oct. 8 season opener, but the Tampa Bay Lightning just got a lot more nervous about theirs. Hopefully Tyler Johnson's injury isn't serious.

The Detroit Red Wings finished the preseason without a regulation loss after beating former coach Mike Babcock and his Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. [MLive]

Speaking of the Red Wings, they've also signed 2015 first-rounder Evgeny Svechnikov to a three-year ELC. [Winging It In Motown]

The Columbus Blue Jackets have three really good forwards in their top line. They play hockey really good.

Here's how that line looked last night against the Nashville Predators:

In case you want to see how that looks in real time:

Who's on the hot seat in the Eastern Conference? John Kreiser takes a look at the players to watch, from Jaromir Jagr to Phil Kessel. [NHL]

Daniel and Henrik Sedin will almost certainly end up in the Hockey Hall of Fame, but they're probably destined for one of its most frustrating distinctions, says Mike Brophy. [The Hockey News]

Elsewhere in the Pacific Division, Raffi Torres was ejected from the San Jose Sharks-Anaheim Ducks game last night after hitting Jakob Silfverberg in the head.

In their final round of roster moves, the Pittsburgh Penguins have released veteran D and former Star Sergei Gonchar from his PTO contract. Perhaps it's time to start getting ready for the Hall of Fame. [NHL]

Elsewhere, goalie Eddie Lack and the Carolina Hurricanes have agreed to a two-year, $5.5 million extension. [CBC]

And former Los Angeles Kings defenseman Slava Voynov has reportedly signed with the KHL's SKA St. Petersburg after returning to Russia. [ESPN]

The Texas Stars have begun preseason play, and a clutch of hopefuls are fighting to make their lineup, too. The word "truculence" shows up in Stephen Meserve's recap of Friday night's 4-3 loss to San Antonio. [100 Degree Hockey]

Meanwhile, Stephen also has a write-up on the Cedar Park team's latest round of roster moves...

...and Sean Shapiro of Wrong Side of the Red Line reports on its own unique challenges in the goaltending position:

It's hockey time for college and university teams, too. First NCAA game of the season, marked down.

Connor McWho? Michigan-born Alex DeBrincat – the undersized forward who went undrafted twice before the Erie Otters took a chance on him – has scored seven goals in the team's first two games of the season, including a franchise-record five during the Otters' Thursday night game against the Niagara IceDogs. [Today's Slap Shot]

Finally: How would your favorite NHL players fare at competitive consumption? Find out what Tyler Seguin, Justin Williams, Seth Jones and more would eat if they were going to eat a whole lot of it in a really short time.