The Dallas Stars continued their road trip into Carolina looking to build off of their solid effort in Philadelphia. Falling behind early, the Stars found their rhythm and outplayed the struggling Canes almost the entire game.
Almost. The Stars fell victim to their third period identity crisis, but were able to hold on for the win, helped by a last minute empty net goal by Patrick Eaves and solid goaltending from Kari Lehtonen.
Similar to the game against the Flyers, the Stars started the first period slow, allowing the Hurricanes to jump out to a quick 1-0 lead. Also similar to the game in Philly, the Stars finally started showing signs of life around the 10 minute mark of the first period.
The McKenzie-Horcoff-Ritchie line has become an absolute joy to watch. McKenzie opened the scoring for the Stars and that line was directly responsible for Alex Goligoski's goal as well. It's also worth noting Cody Eakin's patience with the puck in the corner just prior to the goal. The first period ended 3-1 in favor of the Stars.
The Stars maintained the possession advantage for the second period, but were unable to penetrate Khudobin. The Stars poured it on at the start of the third period and quickly jumped out to a 4-1 lead. The Canes did not generate a shot on net until the seven minute mark. Almost immediately after going up 4-1 the Stars all but stopped playing and you could almost feel another late third period collapse coming. Kari made the stops his team needed him to and the Stars escaped with a win.
You can see how poorly the Canes started the third period and how well the Stars were playing and how they ramped up their play about seven minutes in. Unfortunately, you can also see how the Stars went into prevent mode and allowed the Canes right back into the game.
In these posts, I will also be including a chart that shows scoring chances. Scoring chances are loosely defined as shots generated from inside the black outlined area below.
In these posts, you will also see a few abbreviations and terms used.
CF, CA, C+/- and CF% are Corsi For, Corsi Against, and Corsi For Percentage. They are defined as follows,
Corsi For: The number of on-ice shot attempts (on goal, missed, or blocked) taken by the player's team.
Corsi Against: The number of on-ice shot attempts (on goal, missed, or blocked) taken by the opposing team.
Corsi%: The percentage of on-ice shot attempts (on goal, missed, or blocked) taken by the player's team; also known as CF%.