Yesterday’s practice was a bit unusual for the Dallas Stars’ standards. Rather than running through drills and barking orders, the coaching staff took a step back and let the players run practice. It led to a more laidback atmosphere as the team simply got to enjoy playing some hockey:
“We think that the team is confident, we’re playing well, and sometimes you need to be a kid again,” Stars coach Jim Montgomery said of the reason for the off-day fun.
Of course, not everything is fun and games — the Stars are currently riding a three-game losing streak after winning seven in a row. But Dallas still sits in a playoff spot, and Montgomery feels that the team is continuing to improve:
“Our game management is significantly improved…consistency…playing to our identity. Last year when we didn’t play well, it seemed we never had the puck. Now when we have our B-minus games, we still have the puck our share of the game. But the evolution of our game is to be even better at those elements, so that our B-minus games can end up more Ws.”
You can read more from Mike Heika here.
Here’s a little peek at what practice looked liked:
The guys had some fun at practice today with a game of 3-on-3 between players from North America and Europe!— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) December 2, 2019
Check out some highlights as Team Europe took home the W. #GoStars pic.twitter.com/ISd5Pu2tb7
Where did the offense go? Matthew DeFranks investigates:
Sean Shapiro went to Cedar Park recently, and boy, did he write a great story:
Shap Shots: There is going to be an emotional reunion soon for Emil Djuse, who has never seen his daughter outside of a hospital or air ambulance https://t.co/qzNh0SwwyM— Sean Shapiro (@seanshapiro) December 2, 2019
The Stars have some updates about the Winter Classic, including how tailgating is barred for some dumb reason:
Around the League
Speaking of Chicago...
Sean Avery told the New York Post Crawford kicked him during a game with the Kings.— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) December 3, 2019
Patrick O'Sullivan also tweeted he "went through awful things with my first NHL coach who knew my abuse background as a child.” Crawford was O'Sullivan's first NHL coach. https://t.co/VeAM0zc9F2
Wes isn’t the only one who views Dallas as a possible landing spot for Taylor Hall:
This is both ridiculous and completely understandable:
Last December, Tyler Ennis received a grim diagnosis from a doctor about his broken ankle. Turns out, they confused his x-ray with Tyler Ennis the basketball player who suffered a catastrophic leg injury.— Ian Mendes (@ian_mendes) December 2, 2019
I spoke to both Tyler Ennises about the mistake.https://t.co/9k3P6tgzgi pic.twitter.com/rqwmfBzuWe
Corey Pronman gives Miro Heiskanen and Cale Makar some love in his recent scouting piece:
Even after Cale Makar was drafted, @coreypronman didn’t fully buy into the hype. With Makar trending to be the Calder Trophy recipient this season, Pronman admits, he was wrong in his earlier evaluations.https://t.co/pj7MUXes9Y— The Athletic NHL (@TheAthleticNHL) December 2, 2019
Finally, the fact that the New Jersey Devils might even consider this is just downright depressing: