But Tyler Seguin wasn't about to let that happen.
Yes, it's been more than two years since the Bruins sent the young star to Dallas in a package deal that included Reilly Smith, Loui Eriksson and Rich Peverley, but there's still a little something extra in Seguin's game when he plays the Bruins, and he showed all of it in a 5-3 Stars victory.
The Bruins shot out to a 6-0 shot advantage in the first four minutes as the Stars could neither win a faceoff nor clear the zone with conviction. Kari Lehtonen kept the Stars in it long enough for Tyler Seguin to score his first-ever road goal at TD Garden, a blast from the left circle that snuck through Tuukka Rask on the Stars first shot of the game.
Colin Miller would tie the game shortly thereafter on a blistering-but-unscreened point shot off what felt like the 100th clean defensive zone face off loss, leading to a longer period of Bruins pressure. It is worth noting that Miller won the AHL's hardest shot competition last season with a record 105.5 miles per hour, and it's also worth noting that Patrick Sharp couldn't get over to set up even token resistance. But it was still an unscreened point shot.
From a shot standpoint, the Stars recovered a bit after that first-four-minute barrage, playing the Bruins to a 9-6 disadvantage the rest of the period. But it was the Bruins final shot of the period that stung as a wide-open Eriksson picked up a rebound of a Torey Krug shot on the first Bruins power play of the night.
While there were still moments of panic in the second period, including giving up a shorthanded breakaway to Brad Marchand just 10 seconds in, it was a much better period for the Stars. While they couldn't convert on their first power play opportunity, Seguin took advantage of a second one soon after to put another shot from the left circle through Rask, this time courtesy of a nice screen from Jamie Benn.
The Stars had to kill a couple penalties of their own, most notably a pretty nasty trip from Antoine Roussel with about six minutes left in the period. But the recently-leaky PK got through those and gave Jyrki Jokipakka a chance for his first NHL goal with 2:36 left in the second, another left point shot (though this one from much closer to the blueline). Dallas escaped to intermission with the lead thanks to a diving defenive play from Johnny Oduya and a couple of strong positional stands from Kari Lehtonen.
Dallas barely survived yet another frenetic start to the third period (are you sensing a theme yet?), but drew an early power play when the Bruins shot the puck out of play. And Seguin continued his barreling through the Bruins defense with his third goal of the game after John Klingberg just kept the puck onside at the blue line.
But the Bruins got a power play of their own right after Cody Eakin was nailed for interference. They took the momentum there and kept it until Brad Marchand was caught interference with Jason Spezza. This time, it was the Stars second power play unit that did the work with Alex Goligoski scoring on a gorgeous backhand.
Not to be completely outshined by Seguin, Eriksson knocked home a puck on the back door with 2:30 left after a turnover at center ice, making for a frantic final few minutes with the Bruins net empty. To their credit, the Stars kept the shots mostly to the outside and wound the clock down.
A couple notes to take care of:
- Chris Kelly went down very early on a no-contact play. His leg buckled under him as his toe caught the ice awkwardly, and he had to be helped from the ice. He broke his left femur on the play and will have surgery on it tomorrow, which will put him out 6-8 months. Our best goes out to him. That's one nasty injury.
- Seguin's first goal of the game was the 300th point of his career, making him the first member of the 2010 draft class to reach that milestone.
- His third goal of the game marked the sixth hat trick of his Stars career, tying the Dallas record (Mike Modano had six after the team moved to Dallas and seven with the franchise overall). It was his seventh hat trick since 2011-12 to lead the league by two (and leads the league since 2013-14 since he has six since then). He's averaged a hat trick every 28 games played since joining the Stars.
- Kari Lehtonen looked shaky on the first goal but was very solid after for the Stars. There wasn't much he could go about either of Eriksson's goals, and he made some very large stops as the game progressed and the Bruins doubled-up the Stars in shots. All in all, a nice comeback effort for him after that bad start against Florida.
- Finally, yes, everyone on Stars social media during the game simultaneously declared it Jyrki Jokipakka time. And no, there were no duck (or donut, for that matter) sightings after the had trick.