The Dallas Stars’ third period performance against the Minnesota Wild this past Tuesday was unlike anything we’ve seen so far this season. In fact the Stars looked so different out on the ice that many wondered if they just tossed head coach Jim Montgomery’s system out the window during intermission.
In truth, the players and coaching staff maintain they simply made some adjustments to the system. Assistant coach Todd Nelson suggested some tweaks after spending the first two periods as an “eye in the sky,” but the Stars were already discussing possible changes the day before:
“The meeting, going back to Monday, we talked about everything,” Stars defenseman John Klingberg said. “We talked about what players can do, what coaches can do, what can we do in the system that can change momentum of the games? This is how that came up, and we tried it out and seems to be working.”
The first major change was a more aggressive forecheck to force more turnovers from the Wild. The second was changing the positioning of the highest forward (the F3) in the offensive zone, placing them further back to give them more time and space to find weaknesses in the Wild’s defense:
“It’s like a quarterback,” Jim Montgomery said. “Why does the quarterback go to the shotgun? Gives you more time to see everything. Well, it’s the same thing with our F3. The higher you are, the more you can see the holes.”
You can read more about the changes made from Matthew DeFranks here.
Sean Shapiro also provides his own in-depth breakdown of the Dallas-Minnesota third period:
Two periods into Tuesday's game, the Stars' season looked like it could be over. Then Dallas scored six goals in 21 minutes. @seanshapiro goes to the film room to figure out how it happened and what lessons they can carry forward. https://t.co/MPLefTBdbA— The Athletic Dallas (@TheAthleticDFW) October 31, 2019
Fairy tales apparently do come true, but will the Stars get to see a happily ever after?
Still in a Halloween mood? The Stars talk about their (least) favorite costumes from years prior:
Moving on to November — tonight is the Stars’ first game against the Colorado Avalanche. Here’s what Montgomery has to say about the matchup:
Around the League
‘Twas a quiet night in the NHL last night — perhaps everyone was too busy trick-or-treating?
- This sounds familiar — the Calgary Flames were down by three against the Nashville Predators, but rode a monstrous third period to a 6-5 win in overtime. [Matchsticks & Gasoline]
- Similarly, but the Vegas Golden Knights blew a two-goal lead in the late third period, and the Montreal Canadiens walked away with a 5-4 overtime victory. [Knights on Ice]
Jared Clinton tries to scare each fan base with a concerning statistic, and surprisingly Dallas’s isn’t their power play percentage:
The Nashville Predators have extended another player, locking Austin Watson up for three more years:
Looking to buy low or sell high in fantasy? The Athletic’s got you covered:
Dustin Byfuglien has undergone ankle surgery, but his future with the Winnipeg Jets is still murky:
“It’s a complicated issue,” #NHLJets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said today of Dustin Byfuglien. “I’m here to speak but there’s really not much that I can enlighten beyond what’s been talked about as it stands right now.”https://t.co/EdgGcMRDr8— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) October 31, 2019
Finally, on a similar subject, please send positive vibes towards Jets forward Mark Letestu:
Maurice announces Mark Letestu has a virus called myocarditis that attacks the heart. He’s shut down for six months with only very light activity.— Mitchell Clinton (@MitchellClinton) October 31, 2019