Dallas Stars Daily Links: The Stars Earn "A Gift From the Hockey Gods" In a 2-1 Win Over the Wild

Our Gang made the most of its luck with a poised Game 2 victory. Plus, odd goals galore, punctuated by feats of goaltending fortitude.

The Dallas Stars knew the Minnesota Wild were coming for them last night. They knew it, prepared for it, and prevailed.

Mike Heika writes that the team's composure is helping to ensure its talent has a chance to shine:

"I think we are playing our smartest hockey away from the puck," Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. "We've realized down the stretch here that it's important to play both ways, it's important to win games 2-1. We've come a long way as a group in playing the game the right way."

The oddball goal by Antoine Roussel that broke another scoreless second-period tie was indeed a gift, but it's how the Stars handled it that made their night:

Dallas got the benefit of the call, but it also handled the fortune with poise. The entire game was a test of their control. The linesmen early on were being picky on every faceoff, and the Stars appeared frustrated. They ended up winning 59 percent of the draws (40 of 68). Roussel was cross-checked hard in the first period and received no call. Minutes later, Ales Hemsky was called for what appeared to be a questionable slash. The Stars responded with maybe their best penalty kill of the year.

It was a strong statement about what this team has become. The reaction was the same to good luck or bad.

"That's been created this season," said goalie Kari Lehtonen, who stopped 25 shots and is 8-1-0 in his last nine starts with a 1.66 GAA. "We don't have panic in our game, and that's a good feeling. We just keep playing and keep grinding."

There's much more at Mike's place. [SportsDayDFW]

The Dallas Morning News has also posted some of the best photos from Game 2. [DMN]


You guys want to bask in this victory just a little longer, right? Yeah, pretty sure you want to bask.

Coach Lindy Ruff says the Stars got the game they'd prepared for from the Wild.

Jamie Benn talks about all the playoff-style hockey that led up to the actual playoff hockey the Stars are playing so well right now:

And Razor discusses try-storming, critical execution and the Antoine Roussel experience in the Game 2 Emporium.

Speaking of that Rooster goal, because we were, here it is for your endless-looping pleasure.

Sean Leahy of Puck Daddy was kind enough to post the NHL's explanation for its "good hockey goal" ruling.

The freak goal was just one reason why Allan Muir chose Rooster as the Third Star of last night's playoffs action. [Sports Illustrated]

Wild netminder Devan Dubnyk weighs in on what will probably end up being the most bizarre goal of this year's Stanley Cup playoffs. [Sportsnet]

This sequence shows why Kari Lehtonen was last night's First Star of the Game.

Have you seen how @DallasStars is rebranding Czech-mates Hemsky and Radek Faksa as the Festrunk brothers? That's because they are TWO WILD AND CRAZY GUYS.

Here's how the hockey media are enjoying themselves in Dallas.

Meanwhile, Bob McKenzie says the Stars may find the "road less traveled" to make a deep run. [TSN]

Action! We has it. It's the playoffs. Here's what happened yesterday:

Here's a look at that Chimera apple, because seeing is believing:

The Pens may have lost, but Phil Kessel scored a textbook tic-tac-toe goal:

Fellow Pen and longtime Star Trevor Daley opened up to Dave Molinari about how important it is to him to be a role model for younger players of color. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Did the Chicago Blackhawks get Game 2 handed to them after officials called back Vladimir Tarasenko's second goal for the St. Louis Blues? The league's new blue-line cameras were the deciding factor. [NHL]

As it turns out, they're making history all over this year's playoffs:

The Flyers have lost Sean Couturier for two weeks to the sprained shoulder he suffered after that big hit from Alex Ovechkin. [Philadelphia Inquirer]

And the Tampa Bay Lightning will probably have to finish their series without shutdown forward J.T. Brown after he sustained an upper-body injury while blocking a shot in Game 2. [Tampa Bay Times]

Yes, Corey Perry is trolling you on purpose. [SI]

And as it turns out, the preternaturally serene Nicklas Backstrom may be the Caps' biggest prankster. [The Hockey News]

Thomas Drance examines how former Star Reilly Smith has caught fire for the Florida Panthers. [Sportsnet]

Finally: The Stars have started creating tiny music videos for each playoff game. Here's their offering for Game 2. Enjoy.