This game had a lot going for it: a divisional rival, a rally from behind, finally an overtime we survived, a heartbreaking miss on a 3-on-0 attempt in said overtime, and a shootout. A shootout! Unfortunately, it did not have a win going for it.
Let’s tweet about it.
1. Debilitating lack of offense
A big difference this season is the Stars can't seem to generate any offense/shots from their points.— Erin (@ErinB_DBD) January 25, 2017
And it just so happens that this observation is born out in data:
If you’d like contrast for teams at the top of the standings, here’s the heat map for the Washington Capitals, Columbus Bluejackets, Minnesota Wild, and Pittsburgh Penguins. Heat maps are like fingerprints, no two are alike. But what’s similar in all of these at the top? A lot of dark red (higher rate of shots) in the middle of the ice. What do you notice about our heat map? Most of our dark red is all on the outside, at a harder angle, outside of the high danger zone.
Our offense is stymied this season and yes, you can still attribute that to losing Ales Hemsky and Mattias Janmark for the season, as well as Val Nichushkin, even though his point production and decision making frustrated fans last season. Not to mention the injuries that have plagued the top nine and a potentially injured Jamie Benn.
This is their heat map from last season:
Where they not only had more shot generation from the points, but they had all the shot generation from the front of the net as well. As you’ll recall, it was a stellar season.
2. Penalty kill update
To the surprise of no one, the Stars just allowed a powerplay goal and made it look easy for the other team— Derek Neumeier (@Derek_N_NHL) January 25, 2017
Update: it’s still bad. The Stars are currently 73.3% on the penalty kill, which is only good enough for second worst in the league. The actual worst are the Buffalo Sabres, who we play on Thursday night, so that should be interesting, at least.
3. I suppose we have to be grateful for this
On a good note, the franchise record is 108 power play goals against in 80 games in 1987-88. I think that record is safe.— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) January 25, 2017
The penalty kill could be worse? If someone could find me the record for power play goals allowed, I’d be interested to see how the 87-88 team stacks up.
What I’m actually grateful for here is that we didn’t allow any short handed goals to take over sole possession of that bottom spot in the NHL. We’re currently tied with the Flyers and it’s one time I don’t mind sharing with them.
4. Here’s my bright spot
Patrick Eaves is making a hard case to be everyone’s favorite Star, and I’m inclined to let him. When Tyler Seguin scored to tie him for goals in the second period, Patrick Eaves answered with the Stars’ first 5-on-3 goal of the season to retake possession of the lead.
He also scored on his shoot out attempt. His shootout record is a little better than 50%, 8 goals in 15 attempts over his career, which, as has been discussed, is quite lengthy at this point. Suffice to say he’s never been a shootout specialist, but this does seem to be the year he’s been touched by the hockey gods.
5. At least we got the point?
We should honestly get a bonus bonus point for just Not Losing Overtime.— Holly (@holly_holl) January 25, 2017
Stars are now 2-9-1 in overtime for the season but then, we’ve never been especially stellar in overtime. Even during our winning season last year, we ended the season 8-7-2 in extra time. I’ve talked before about the reasons for that, but safe to say whenever we pull a tie out of regulation I’m generally just happy that we eked out the point.
The Stars have played 87 straight games without a shootout. An NHL record since the shootout was implemented. Last one was Jan 7, 2016.— Josh Bogorad (@JoshBogorad) January 25, 2017
Of course, this is actually the first time we’ve made it out of 3-on-3 overtime to a shootout this season, and we were the last team to get to a shootout. I supposed we should just be happy that Jamie Benn remembered how to score on his attempt. His current record is 34%, 14 goals on 41 attempts.
6. Circling the drain of the season
"When are the #Stars gonna turn the corner?"— Travis Currie (@travcurrie) January 25, 2017
There is no corner. This is a circle.
Which is probably overkill for a team only three points out of a play off spot. Still, it’s hard to stay positive watching this team lose night after night. We could start sharing our coping mechanisms.