As Dallas Stars fans react, and overreact, to that season-opening road trip, here’s a thought experiment you may not have tried yet: Maybe the Victory Green Gang likes to play for overtime in low-scoring games.
Sounds crazy, right? And yet they have made it work 50 percent of the time in their first four games. The Dallas Morning News’ Matthew DeFranks examines some reasons why head coach Rick Bowness might like playing this way:
It’s not a coincidence that these Stars play tight games. They are built to restrict scoring chances. They have been one of the league’s worst even-strength offenses the last few seasons. They have relied on special teams and goaltending at various points to carry them through previously....
Playing nail-biters the entire season is a lot to ask of a team, even one as veteran as these Stars are. But it just may be what the Stars have to get used to (again).
The Stars made it work during their push to the Stanley Cup Final in 2020. But the system failed them in the abbreviated 2021 season, and that does tend to cloud the view:
Close games strangled the Stars last year, especially in overtimes and shootouts, where they lost 14 times. This year, their only two wins have come with extra time.
“There’s a lot more coming, that’s how tight the league is,” Bowness said. “We’ve been able to practice [overtime and shootouts] this year a little more, which we’ll continue to do. We didn’t practice it at all last year because of the schedule.”
Matt has more. [SportsDayDFW]
Michael Raffl has won the love of Sportstoons, which is one sign he’s truly arrived in Dallas.
Speaking of which, there’s a very good chance Stars fans will learn to love this 2021 NHL Draft pick very soon.
Meet Jack Bar, the prospect the Stars hope will become the next fifth-round steal— Matthew DeFranks (@MDeFranks) October 18, 2021
"His calling card, I do believe, will be as a really good, all-around defenseman. So we’re excited to see him develop into that." https://t.co/vM4j94dREj pic.twitter.com/kMX9twwoyq
Around The Leagues
Blues are coming home 3-0-0 on the young season. While @justin03 wasn’t able to live tweet the game tonight (sorry..or not depending) he was able to bring you some highlights. #stlblues https://t.co/I4Q8qc37dE— St. Louis Game Time (@StLouisGameTime) October 21, 2021
Jason isn’t the only Robertson beset with injury woes. Brother Nick will sit for more than two months after fracturing his right fibula while playing for the Manitoba Moose.
Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nick Robertson will be out a minimum of 10 weeks with a broken leg https://t.co/ibOzPiUXQ7— Hockey Night in Canada (@hockeynight) October 19, 2021
Oh, like you weren’t thinking it. Matt Larkin and Ryan Kennedy just said it out loud. You’re welcome.
Also at THN: Adam Proteau looks at three teams with dire starts and says there’s only one in dire straits.
Here's my latest, for @TheHockeyNews. Which of these three winless NHL teams – Chicago, Montreal and Winnipeg – should be most worried about their season at this point? The answer is the Habs. https://t.co/1bLvcqomQK— Adam Proteau (@Proteautype) October 20, 2021
Hall of Famer Mike Bossy is taking a break from broadcasting as he faces a battle that will require “all my strength and all my focus.”
Mike Bossy has been diagnosed with lung cancer. The Hockey Hall of Famer scored 1,126 points (573 goals, 553 assists) in 752 games during 10 seasons with the Islanders.https://t.co/Rtl2T9e9t3— NHL.com (@NHLdotcom) October 19, 2021
Greetings From Beautiful Boise
Friday is a big night for the Stars organization all the way around, as the Idaho Steelheads will tell you.
Training camp must be fun. Enjoy.