Riding an impressive five-game winning streak, the Dallas Stars took on the Nashville Predators hoping for a result similar to their 3-1 win over the Predators last Saturday. Unfortunately, despite coming back from behind on two separate occasions in the third period and forcing the game into overtime, the Stars found their win streak snapped thanks to a quick Ryan Johansen goal just 43 seconds into overtime.
Anton Khudobin and the Stars’ defense played pretty well throughout the first 40 minutes, with the lone goal against coming off of a series of unfortunate bounces that can be chalked up to dumb puck luck. The Stars’ offense meanwhile was quiet until it exploded in the third period, with goals coming courtesy of Miro Heiskanen and Taylor Fedun. The Stars had multiple opportunities to take the lead in the final minutes of regulation, but Juuse Saros buckled down and dragged his team into overtime.
While the loss is a tad disappointing, the Stars still managed to pick up a point against a very tough division rival. And thankfully for the boys in victory green, they won’t have to play in Nashville again this season... unless they square off in the playoffs, that is.
The game almost started out with the bang, as the Predators fired a shot past Anton Khudobin less than three minutes in, but it ricocheted off the post. The Stars got a chance to take the lead themselves a few minutes later when P.K. Subban took a holding penalty on Jamie Benn, but they squandered it by taking a “too many men” penalty on the power play. Somehow.
After about half a minute of 4-on-4 and a successful penalty kill, the Stars proceeded to trade chances with the Predators back and forth. Nashville had the most dangerous scoring chance of the period when Nick Bonino came streaking down the boards and delivered a perfect pass cross-ice to Kevin Fiala. A goal seemed inevitable, but Khudobin absolutely robbed Fiala, who will be probably have nightmares of that glove save for at least a few weeks.
Unfortunately for Dallas, Fiala would get the last laugh. With a little more than two minutes left in the period, he fired a shot that went went wide and behind the net. The puck then bounced off of Predators’ forward Craig Smith’s back, then bounced off of Khudobin’s back and into the net. It was weird.
Predators finally get one past Dobby and this is how they do it... pic.twitter.com/zekQw719L7— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) February 8, 2019
That was it for the first, and the Stars headed into the locker room down by one.
Score: Dallas 0, Nashville 1
Shots: Dallas 8, Nashville 9
The middle frame started without nearly as much excitement, but there were some decent chances from both sides. The best chance for Dallas came roughly halfway through when the Jason Spezza line had a 3-on-2 rush. Similar to the Bonino-Fiala rush from the first, Spezza came streaking down the left side and made a cross-ice pass to Andrew Cogliano, who was promptly stopped by Juuse Saros.
After the save, Roman Polak and former Star Dan Hamhuis got into a little kerfuffle, which earned each of them a minor penalty and gave fans some 4-on-4 hockey. But as the Stars’ broadcasters said, there’s a reason why they changed overtime to 3-on-3, as the two minutes passed by without much fanfare.
Shortly after a scoring opportunity by Blake Comeau, Ryan Hartman took a tripping penalty against Esa Lindell, and arguably should have had another penalty for cross-checking Benn immediately afterwards. However Dallas failed to make anything out of their power play once again, and the second period ended scoreless for Dallas.
Score: Dallas 0, Nashville 1
Shots: Dallas 17, Nashville 15
I don’t know what the coaches said to each team during the second break, but whatever it was, it worked. It took just five minutes for the Stars to finally put themselves on the board, as Miro Heiskanen delivered a laser from the point off of a Tyler Seguin rebound to tie the game up at 1-1.
Seguin gets a half slapper to go off the pads of Saros and Miro gets a HUGE rebound and rips it past the Preds netminder to tie the game.— Dylan Nadwodny (@dnadders) February 8, 2019
DAL 1 NSH 1 pic.twitter.com/d4rgGiVwxu
Several minutes later, the Predators nearly scored as the puck squeezed past Khudobin, but Polak was there to save the day and clear the puck. The happiness was short-lived, however, as a bad turnover by Dallas led to a tic-tac-toe goal for Viktor Arvidsson on and the Predators.
The momentum from that goal was also short-lived, as Taylor Fedun fired one past Saros just a minute later to tie the game up once again:
The Stars tie it up again as Fedun lets a wrist shot from the point go and it gets past Saros. Could have possibly been deflected by Dickinson.— Dylan Nadwodny (@dnadders) February 8, 2019
DAL 2 NSH 2 pic.twitter.com/LygiCnhG6H
Both teams kept up the pressure, trading several high-quality scoring chances back and forth throughout the rest of the period. But Saros and Khudobin both stood tall, sending the game into overtime.
Score: Dallas 2, Nashville 2
Shots: Dallas 29, Nashville 23
Aaaaaand that didn’t take long, as Johansen fired one past Khudobin just 43 seconds into OT.
Final Score: Dallas 2, Nashville 3 (OT)
Final Shots: Dallas 29, Nashville 24
The Stars continue their road trip on Saturday, February 9, when they face the Coyotes in Arizona. Puck drop is at 3 p.m. CST.