Tyler Seguin is a great hockey player. Since moving to Dallas, he’s had offensive career years, consistently in the top 10 in scoring, and has rounded out his game with improved backchecking and work along the boards and away from the puck.
It seems only fitting that Seguin led Dallas to an overtime win versus his old team, the hottest in the NHL right now. He made several Bruins fans longingly wonder what may have been if they’d managed to keep him in the fold in the black and gold.
He makes that Victory Green pop, though, doesn’t he? Thanks again, Boston!
The Stars started the game off really well, taking their pace to the Bruins and setting the tone from puck drop. They roared out to a 12-1 shots on goal advantage in the first half of the period, but Bruins goaltender Anton Khudobin was a stone wall. Even with the first power play of the game and several pointblank shots, Khudobin was able to keep the Stars off the board.
Two back-to-back penalties committed by the Stars allowed the Bruins to get their feet under them. They’d close the shot gap through the back half of the period, and Kari Lehtonen was by far the best penalty killer for Dallas. The period would end without either team punching through the goaltenders, and in the first period of a road game, that’s not a terrible result after 20 minutes.
It was the Bruins turn to set the tone early in the middle frame, with Dallas seemingly playing only in the defensive zone for the first few minutes. The one time they really spent time in the offensive zone was off of a great hustle effort by Remi Elie who was able to make a pass through traffic for a streaking Stephen Johns to put up over Khudobin’s shoulder to open the scoring. It was the first shot on goal by Dallas in the period, too.
The next five minutes were played fairly evenly between the two teams. Jamie Benn took an offensive zone faceoff and turned it into a goal by punching the puck straight forward on a set play. Alexander Radulov pounced right on it and put it past Khudobin, who looked quite surprised at the way the play unfolded and didn’t even get a real save on the shot.
Just like that it was 2-0 Dallas.
They’d hang onto that score until 16 minutes had passed in the period, when Zdeno Chara had a clear line to Lehtonen and just smoked one right past him short side. With that much time to come out and get set for the shot, that’s one of those ones where you wish he’d had the save, especially considering the lack of traffic in front of the shot. Then again, I’m not the type to put myself in front of a 100+ mile an hour Chara slap shot, so I’m not sure I totally blame him for not stopping it either.
It is commonly said in hockey that the two goal lead is the hardest to hold in hockey, and Dallas demonstrated that yet again today. After playing a very good period in which the Stars managed to limit the chances against, Lehtonen came out to challenge a Ryan Spooner shot from distance and it managed to squeeze through his blocker side and bounce right into the net. Lehtonen had been far out of his net, and couldn’t reach behind him fast enough once he realized he didn’t have the puck in his gear.
It was a bit of a momentum killer, as that’s the kind of softer goal you don’t want to give up — especially when it is a tying goal. Neither team found a go-ahead goal and the game required extra time to determine a winner.
Boston is not great in the overtime realm, and Dallas’ results in the extra time were only about 50-50 heading into this one. Dallas worked really hard and managed to draw a penalty due to their hustle on the puck.
The Stars had Lehtonen pulled for an extra attacker on the delayed penalty, but they’d never need a faceoff to start the power play. Seguin and company held onto the puck for a solid 30+ seconds. Seguin ended the game with an incredible individual effort, reminiscent of his partner-in-crime Benn, as he walked past two Bruins on the ice and then beat Khudobin for the overtime winner.