After seemingly dominating their first two games in possession and shooting metrics, and losing both efforts, the Dallas Stars finally got their first win of the season against the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night. It was another game in which the Stars dominated puck possession, but this time, a solid defensive effort and great goaltending by Ben Bishop gave the Stars two points in the standings.
Head coach Ken Hitchcock felt it was about time they got the result they deserved.
“I was thinking, on the bench, that we'd played three great hockey games. To have the record we're at, I know everything isn't fair, but it would have felt poorly to not finish this one off."
Now, they’ll head to Nashville to take on the Predators and hope to build off of that win. A winning streak would be good in two regards: 1) it would reinforce that if the team continues to play the way it has, they’ll get results; and, 2) it would go a long way to showing the fans that this year isn’t like last year.
Last year, the Stars couldn’t seem to string together more than two wins in a row. In fact, their longest winning streak last season was three games, and they only did that one time in the entirety of the season. That kind of inconsistency can be a death knell to the playoff hopes of NHL teams.
Ben Bishop knows it, too. “Big win for us, you never want to lose three in a row in this league.”
The Nashville Predators were postseason darlings last year after sneaking into the playoffs in the last wild card spot. They had better consistency in winning last year than the Stars did. They had five 3-game winning streaks and two 4-game winning streaks after an inconsistent first few weeks of the season.
They’re off to the same kind of start Dallas is this season, losing their first two games and winning in game three. Nashville will be looking to establish a winning streak of their own as they hope to build off their Stanley Cup final appearance last season.
The similarities between Dallas and Nashville this early in the season include similar goaltending performances (in which Dallas actually got a bump after game 3, and Nashville did not after blowing a 3-0 lead and making a comeback to beat the Philadelphia Flyers 6-5 in their game 3) and good puck possession (both have CorsiFor% over 50%, which is generally considered the cutoff between good puck possession teams and bad).
Neither team has been particularly lucky, either. With low shot percentages for both teams, and the inevitable regression to the means in shooting and goaltending departments, we may see a goal-scoring frenzy or a 1-0 game tonight - it’s kind of hard to tell at this point.
Either way, we hope the Stars end up on the “W” side of the ledger.
From Stars PR, name that song!
I JUST CAN'T WAIT TO BE KLING
Stars defenseman John Klingberg recorded a goal and an assist (1-1=2) on Tuesday night against the Detroit Red Wings for the 32nd multi-point game of his NHL career (last: two assists, April 8, 2017 vs. Colorado). Klingberg now leads the team with four points (2-2=4) through three games this season. Among League blueliners, he is tied for first with two goals and shares fourth with four points. Away from American Airlines Center during the 2016-17 campaign, Klingberg ranked third on the club and led all team defensemen in 20 points (4-16=20) in 40 games.The native of Gothenburg, Sweden has skated in 13 career games against the Predators, registering eight points (0-8=8) with a +7 plus/minus rating. During the 2016-17 season, Klingberg finished tied for 10th among NHL defensemen with 49 points (13-36=49) in a career-high 80 games.