The Colorado Avalanche won eight games in a row against the Dallas Stars, but last night the Dallas Stars refused to give them a ninth. They paid with the loss of Jason Spezza to an upper-body injury and gave up a point by letting the Avs make it to overtime, but the Stars left Denver with the victory, have now won four of their last five games, and the January slump looks well and truly dead.
Mike Heika talked with Lindy Ruff about how the team made it happen:
Dallas once again dominated the shot clock, 44-24, but was trailing 3-2 after two periods. Still, with Spezza hurt and Ruff playing just three lines, Dallas fought through a very physical game.
"We fought through adversity," Ruff said. "We could have got some calls. We had two or three times and guys were bleeding on the bench, running over our goalie, which not only is goalie interference, it's a penalty. I thought we fought through that. It was a gutsy win."
The Stars delivered a full-team effort to shake the Colorado monkey off their backs, with goals from Spezza, Ales Hemsky and Jason Demers as well as the OT game-winner from a resurgent John Klingberg:
Ruff said the Stars received great play from several players, including Ales Hemsky, who had seven shots on goal, Eakin and Mattias Janmark.
"We had some guys who skated tremendous," Ruff said. "Hemsky, Janmark, Eakin, really skated well. Hemsky dominated the game. The most important part was we stayed with it."
Read the rest at Heika's place. [SportsDayDFW]
Want another look at Klinger's 3-on-3 goal? Of course you do.
Antti Niemi kept the Stars in the game with a big save on a Nathan MacKinnon penalty shot.
Hemsky was everywhere last night, including on this goal that tied the game at 2.
Last night, in the #MDK:
- The Minnesota Wild have lost 10 of their past 11 games after blowing a two-goal lead in last night's match with the New York Rangers. [Minneapolis Star Tribune]
- The St. Louis Blues dropped a 3-1 decision to the San Jose Sharks, who now hold the best road record in the Western Conference. [NHL]
- Wayne Simmonds and Claude Giroux each scored twice as the Nashville Predators lost to the Philadelphia Flyers 6-3. [NHL]
- And Jonathan Toews scored in OT to help the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Arizona Coyotes 5-4. [FOX Sports]
Mark Stepneski posted this update on Spezza's injury last night.
Lindy Ruff said Jason Spezza's injury is upper body. Going to be a little bit of time, "more than a few days."— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) February 5, 2016
Meanwhile, Jordan Dix makes the case that Dr. Giggles isn't playing with the right people. [The Hockey Writers]
The latest installment of "The Franchise" offers the story (so far) of Tyler Seguin in Victory Green.
Jaromir Jagr grabbed a goal and two assists, including his 1,100th helper, in a Florida Panthers victory over the Detroit Red Wings that also moved goalie Roberto Luongo into seventh place on the all-time wins list. [NHL]
Brett Yormark of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment talked with Sports Illustrated about the challenges the New York Islanders have faced since moving from their longtime home on Long Island.
Alex Burmistrov became the seventh player (and the second Jet) so far this year to get slapped with a $2,000 fine for embellishment, this one for an incident that occurred during a Jan. 26 game against the Coyotes. [Today's Slapshot]
Meanwhile, Ken Campbell takes another look at the Dennis Wideman case and thinks the NHL is being more serious about diving than it is about its concussion protocol. [The Hockey News]
The Texas Stars come back from the AHL's All-Star break tonight against the San Antonio Rampage.
Today is Don Cherry's birthday. He's actually been celebrating since at least yesterday, which is pretty impressive for an 82-year-old.
Sad news: Jack Riley, who coached the U.S. Olympic ice hockey team to its first gold medal in 1960, has passed away.
Finally: Your Frozen Moment of the Week is a souvenir of the Benneguin's first All-Star Game as teammates. May there be many more. Enjoy.