Well, that wasn't so good, now was it? The Dallas Stars were all over the ice in mostly the wrong ways while the Arizona Coyotes – notably rookie sensations Max Domi and Anthony Duclair – exerted their will in a 6-3 decision at Gila River Arena.
Mike Heika opines that the game was about equal parts Stars dropping their end and Yotes being really, really on:
The Stars were a mess Thursday in a 6-3 loss to the Coyotes, but a lot of that was because Arizona was so good. The Coyotes put 42 shots on Antti Niemi and had the Stars on the run all night.
"We knew that line was a good line, and they definitely took it to us tonight. They were better than us, they skated better, they worked harder. It's unacceptable," Jamie Benn said. "We've got to be ready to go and be ready to play a good solid defensive game against any team in this league. We can't take games off the way we did tonight."
A chastened Jason Demers spoke about his bad night in the penalty box, including the ill-timed tripping call that resulted in a Martin Hanzal PPG (and eventual game-winner):
[The Coyotes] forced a bevy of mistakes from Stars defensemen, including plays by Jason Demers that had him sitting on the bench for much of the second period.
"It was me making three big mistakes, and they capitalized on three big mistakes," Demers said. "I let the team down in a big way."
There's much more at The Dallas Morning News. [SportsDayDFW]
Heika, who has done the sums, respectfully submits that the Stars are better at defense than received wisdom would have you believe.
Last night in #Misery:
- The Winnipeg Jets overcame a three-goal lead to send the Tampa Bay Lightning game to OT, but lost to a Steven Stamkos shootout snipe, 6-5. [FOX Sports]
- Jaden Schwartz scored in overtime and Brian Elliott made 34 saves to propel the St. Blues past the Los Angeles Kings, 2-1. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch]
- Pekka Rinne recorded his third shutout of the season as the Nashville Predators beat the Boston Bruins 2-0 [NESN]
- And the Minnesota Wild won their third game in a row under new head coach John Torchetti as they defeated the Edmonton Oilers 5-2. [Edmonton Sun]
Another power ranking – this one from Yahoo Sports – puts the Stars back in the top teams at No. 2. [Puck Daddy]
Want to increase NHL scoring? Corey Hirsch, a former NHL goalie who once played for the Stars, demonstrates how to make goalie equipment smaller, keep it safe, and maybe even get rid of the trapezoid rule at the same time.
WATCH: Former NHL goalie shows how goalie pads can get smaller and stay safe. https://t.co/hyhVwYgmds— CBS Sports NHL (@CBSSportsNHL) February 18, 2016
Hemal Jhaveri picks the five best moments from the Blackhawks' most recent visit to the White House, including recognitions for Scott Darling and Kimmo Timonen and "the best gift ever" for the President. [USA Today]
Ken Campbell already thinks Michel Therrien's job is as good as gone, so it's no surprise he also thinks the Canadiens' head coach made a big mistake in publicly blaming P.K. Subban for the team's loss to the Avalanche. [The Hockey News]
Allan Muir talks potential trade-deadline moves, from Mikkel Boedker (likely) to Jonathan Drouin (increasingly less so) to Keith Yandle (signs point to no). [Sports Illustrated]
Muir also discusses Gary Bettman's "gleeful" dismissal of Dennis Wideman's concussion defense, and gives the side-eye to what he calls "obvious and unsettling bias." [SI]
And Chris Peters updates this story with details on the NHL Players' Association's upcoming appeal.
The New York Rangers' Ryan McDonagh just missed four games with a head injury, and now he could miss a few more after taking a shot that earned the Toronto Maple Leafs' Leo Komarov a match penalty. [CBC]
Melissa posted news about more turmoil between the Flint Firebirds' owner and their coaching staff in Thursday Links, and yesterday Corey Pronman brought another update:
OHL announces huge sanctions to Flint, ownership, management and coaches are suspended indefinitely pic.twitter.com/gREGJpY8DS— Corey Pronman (@coreypronman) February 18, 2016
The league is stepping in even as at least one parent has said there is "no way" his son will play for Flint next season if owner Rolf Nilsen is still calling the shots. [Toronto Star]
The All-Star MVP has gotten back down to business with the St. John's IceCaps and scored a power-play goal during his third game after the break.
Finally: You knew it was coming – a John Scott All-Star tattoo has appeared in the wild. Enjoy.