Well, that wasn’t how it was supposed to go. The Stars were cruising along with a 1-0 lead until Ben Bishop took a shot to the face in the third and had to exit the contest. Things were chippy throughout, with 11 combined penalties (7 on Dallas, all of them killed successfully). Ultimately, the Stars were done in by former friends James Neal and Cody Eakin. Mark-Andre Fleury put up a gargantuan effort for the Golden Knights, saving 45 of 46 shots (though the Stars hit iron and missed an open net several times). Let’s hope the boys can right the ship tonight in St. Louis. Here are a few highlights and links from the game:
A nice moment during the pregame ceremony:
Alex Radulov made his presence known:
Stars fans, meet Alexander Radulov. pic.twitter.com/SRZoql0tcY— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) October 7, 2017
Ben Bishop was in the midst of a “subtle and perfect” debut according to Razor:
Ben Bishop leaves his Stars debut after taking a puck to the face pic.twitter.com/js8QfYQiuu— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) October 7, 2017
Hitch said Ben Bishop is fine.— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) October 7, 2017
How I felt as a San Diego resident until I Firestick finagled my way into the game (it also isn’t part of the paid Center Ice package when the game is on NHLN):
when NHLN isn't part of the free Center Ice preview so you can't watch VGK-DAL pic.twitter.com/FcuT6wNbWW— Dave Lozo (@davelozo) October 7, 2017
And a little positivity heading forward:
No doubt it was a disappointing result, but there was an awful lot to like from a Stars perspective in that game.— Josh Bogorad (@JoshBogorad) October 7, 2017
Should the Stars have started Kari Lehtonen on opening night? Sean Shaprio thinks not:
This is a bad idea in my opinion.
While Kari Lehtonen may have had better numbers in the preseason, the Stars made a commitment to Ben Bishop as the No. 1 goalie when they signed him to a six-year contract. If this were a video game without egos and expectations from ownership — who happen to be the ones shelling out the money for Bishop’s contract — it would make sense.
Starting Lehtonen on opening night would create too many distractions. There would be a perceived goalie controversy right away, as media members we’d ask Bishop about it — it would provide an unneeded sideshow right off the bat.
See more at Sean’s mailbag. [Wrong Side of the Red Line]
Here is some clarification on the A’s for this year:
And Mike Heika with some further clarification on the Radulov selection:
I think the 5-year contract plays a big role. Hitchcock is leaning on players expected to be here a while and asking for accountability. https://t.co/RL60EZDXPP— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) October 6, 2017
Stephen Hunt takes a look at how the Stars have helped change the hockey scene in Dallas over the last 25 years. [Star-Telegram]
Razor, Luds, and Brent “The Throat” Severyn dish on the 4th winningest coach in NHL history, Ken Hitchock. [SportsDayDFW]
If you haven’t been paying much attention to the Stars this offseason, here is a good refresher as the season begins:
That’s looks like a fun way to get warmed up. Wonder if it is more effective than the soccer volleyball they used to play.
Brian Bickell, who was diagnosed with MS in November, had a nice retirement ceremony in Chicago. [Deadspin]
Absolutely the best way to start the first game of the year. pic.twitter.com/8WjvAK4uXe— NBC Sports Chicago (@NBCSChicago) October 6, 2017
This isn’t technically hockey news, but if you aren’t reading Down Goes Brown, you should be. Here is where you can find him this year. [Down Goes Brown]
Speaking of DGB, his Friday Grab Bag explains what your Stanley Cup predictions say about you.
Rangers power-play goal. The Shattenkrik clan celebrates his primary assist. pic.twitter.com/yImuiHMerV— Evan Sporer (@ev_sporer) October 5, 2017
It’s been a good start to the year for goal scorers:
2017-18 is the second season in NHL history to feature four hat tricks in season-opening games (Hyland, Malone, Noble, Denneny in 1917-18). pic.twitter.com/ty7IQNDOVH— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) October 6, 2017
Obvious and uncomfortable questions for each NHL team this season. [ESPN]
Who said football is better than hockey because there is more scoring? The Blackhawks have more goals through one game than the Bears have touchdowns through four.
When you hear "Chicago has a touchdown" the likelihood of the team being talked about ranked:— Brad Robinson (@bradrobinson8) October 6, 2017