When the Dallas Stars were floundering earlier this season, there were two major issues that stood out.
The first was a lack of scoring from the team’s top forwards, due to a slumping Roope Hintz injured Jason Robertson. But now? The top line is bulldozing opponents:
“Well, [Robertson], he sees the ice and is very calm and patient. He’s a great playmaker,” Bowness said. “Roope knows how to get in the open with his speed, and [Joe Pavelski] knows how to just read off the other two and get in the right spot at the right time. Pavs is so good around the net, but he’s spent his whole career working around the net, finding openings, finding pucks, and deflecting pucks, and knowing where the play is going to be.”
The other issue was subpar goaltending, as Braden Holtby cooled down considerably after a hot start and Anton Khudobin struggled. But then Jake Oettinger was called up and has been fantastic, and Holtby seems to be bouncing back:
“He’s such a competitive guy. Like, there is no way he’ll ever quit on a shot. He won’t quit on a shot in practice,” Bowness said, describing Holtby’s flurry of saves late in the game. “He tries everything to stop every shot in practice, and that’s what you love about the guy and that’s why he’s had the tremendous career that he has.”
You can read more from Mike Heika here.
Saad Yousuf breaks down the performance from the tantalizing trio:
Shift by shift breakdown of Roope Hintz, Jason Robertson and Joe Pavelski dominating for the Stars https://t.co/Iz7JEa0R7r— Saad Yousuf (@SaadYousuf126) December 1, 2021
As a reminder, this was Rick Bowness’ 2,500th NHL game coached:
One for the record books ✍️— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) December 1, 2021
Congratulations to Rick Bowness on 2500 games behind the bench! pic.twitter.com/sjBd68U2sM
Holtby also secured the record for most wins in a goalie’s first 500 games in NHL history:
500 games and 293 wins.— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) December 1, 2021
Wow, Holts. Wow. pic.twitter.com/qgxRazzQ1z
And Roope Hintz scored his first career hat trick:
Around the League
It was a good night for the Central:
- It took a shootout, but the St. Louis Blues squeaked by the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3. [St. Louis Gametime]
- Meanwhile Filip Forsberg scored four goals as the Nashville Predators thrashed the Stars’ next opponent, the Columbus Blue Jackets, 6-0. [On the Forecheck]
- Finally the Minnesota Wild also laid a beatdown on the Arizona Coyotes, winning 5-2. [Hockey Wilderness]
Recently demoted to the AHL, Matt Murray opens up:
“They said it was a management decision. That’s about all I got.”— The Athletic NHL (@TheAthleticNHL) December 1, 2021
Two-time Stanley Cup winner Matt Murray says he feels scapegoated for the Senators' struggles and opens up about his recent AHL demotion.
✍️ @ian_mendes https://t.co/DHodglH8cf
Evander Kane also spoke about his AHL assignment:
Evander Kane reported for his first day in the minors focused on doing what it will take to get back to the NHL instead of rehashing the allegations from the offseason that led to one of the league’s top forwards being relegated to the AHL.https://t.co/ybpvB0YQgM— The Hockey News (@TheHockeyNews) December 1, 2021
Brendan Lemieux has earned five games for his biting incident:
Los Angeles’ Brendan Lemieux has been suspended for five games for Biting Ottawa’s Brady Tkachuk. https://t.co/mGPTYVfR4r— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) December 1, 2021
The New Jersey Devils signed 2019 1st overall pick Jack Hughes to an 8x$8M contract extension:
That's "Jersey Jack" to you. https://t.co/EXPQYEEwRl— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) November 30, 2021
I’m just gonna leave this here:
Read this outrageous memo dated Oct. 18 from the NHL league office to all GM’s/Coaches muzzling any public criticism of “officiating, video replay, supplemental discipline…the league and the game.” #25KFine pic.twitter.com/L4wHZERfK7— Allan Walsh (@walsha) December 1, 2021
Finally, now that December has rolled around, can we expect to see some more trades?