As we move further into the Jake Oettinger era of the Dallas Stars, we should remember he’s only 23. That means there could still be some growing pains to go through. Growing pains for him, for the team and for the fans. That being said, though, bring this on.
This is something I have been looking forward to for a couple of years now. And if the past couple of weeks are any indication of what is to come, then we are in for something special.
Oettinger has wins over Nashville, Colorado, Chicago (a shutout) and two against Winnipeg since the middle of February. And tonight he gets another chance against the Winnipeg Jets. While the first two wins were at American Airlines Center, this one will be on the road.
After losing to the Nashville Predators last Thursday in a shootout, Dallas has bounced back for a pair of wins. Perhaps the more important thing is the offense has scored four goals in both of those wins. And against the LA Kings, all four goals came in the second period.
You hope that is a sign of things to come for the Stars. To have the offense playing at a high level while Oettinger is playing at a high level is something that could propel you into the playoffs.
Tonight’s Potential Lines For Dallas
Jason Robertson (21) - Roope Hintz (24) - Joe Pavelski (16)
Jamie Benn (14) - Tyler Seguin (91) - Denis Gurianov (34)
Michael Raffl (18) - Radek Faksa (12) - Luke Glendening (11)
Riley Tufte (27) - Jacob Peterson (40) - Alexander Radulov (47)
Ryan Suter (20) - Miro Heiskanen (4)
Esa Lindell (23) - John Klingberg (3)
Thomas Harley (55) - Jani Hakanpää (2)
Jake Oettinger (29)
Braden Holtby (70)
The Winnipeg Jets
As mentioned earlier, the Stars have beaten the Jets twice in the last month: 4-3 in overtime on February 11 and 3-2 in overtime on February 23. While Dallas is only two points behind the Minnesota WIld for third in the Central Divison, they’re only six points ahead of the Jets, who are in sixth place.
While Dallas is 7-2-1 in their last 10 games, the Jets are 5-4-1. But, as mentioned earlier, they have won a couple in a row. In those two games, they’ve scored a total of 13 points.
Kyle Connor has been an absolute beast for Winnipeg this year. The 25-year-old has 32 goals and 29 assists. His goals lead the team, while he trails only Blake Wheeler in assists on the team. Wheeler has 30.
Tonight’s Potential Lines For Winnipeg
Paul Stastny (25) - Mark Scheifele (55) - Blake Wheeler (26)
Kyle Connor (81) - Pierre-Luc Dubois (80) - Evgeny Svechnikov (71)
Andrew Copp (9) - Adam Lowry (17) - Nikolai Ehlers (27)
Kristian Vesalainen (93) - Dominic Toninato (21) - Jansen Harkins (12)
Joshua Morrissey (44) - Dylan DeMelo (2)
Brenden Dillon (5) - Neal Pionk (4)
Nathan Beaulieu (28) - Nate Schmidt (88)
Connor Hellebuyck (37)
Eric Comrie (1)