The Dallas Stars announced their preseason schedule today, and both teams from the recently completed Stanley Cup Final are featured opponents. Dallas will play the Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center in their last preseason game before the start of the season.
The Eastern Conference winning Tampa Bay Lightning get two showings on the preseason schedule with both home and road appearances for the Stars.
Usual suspects the Florida Panthers and St Louis Blues round out the opponents in the preseason schedule that will see the Stars play seven games in just 12 days. Here's the full schedule:
|September 22||@ Florida||BB&T Center||6:30 PM|
|September 24||@ St. Louis||Scottrade Center||7:00 PM|
|September 26||vs Tampa Bay||American Airlines Center||7:00 PM|
|September 27||vs Florida||American Airlines Center||7:00 PM|
|September 29||vs St. Louis||American Airlines Center||7:30 PM|
|October 1||@ Tampa Bay||Amalie Arena||6:30 PM|
|October 3||@ Chicago||United Center||7:30 PM|
The most disappointing part of the preseason schedule, though, is the lack of Dallas Stars hockey being played in North Saanich, one of two cities named as Kraft Hockeyville Canada sites for the upcoming fall. The city is located close to Jamie Benn and Jordie Benn's home town, so Dallas Stars versus Vancouver Canucks in a preseason game in the Art Ross Trophy winner's backyard is a storyline that kind of rights itself -- if you're not the NHL, that is. There will be some disappointed folks in that area, as the NHL decided the Vancouver Canucks opponent for that game will be the San Jose Sharks. The Peninsula News Review earlier this year agreed with me on how perfect a Stars/Canucks game would be:
"This is our chance to bring the Benn boys back home. I know it's not a given but it just makes perfect sense."
He's referring to former Peninsula hockey products Jamie and Jordie Benn, who now play for the Dallas Stars. People gathered at the rink Saturday night to watch Dallas play Vancouver — and await the Hockeyville announcement — and Benn scored the opening goal of the game.
As hockey fans know all too well, though, sometimes what makes perfect sense to everyone else is not put into action by the NHL.