Dallas Stars Daily Links: The State Of The Stars As Bye Week Begins

Sean Shapiro names a few things the Stars should think about during their downtime. Plus, T-Stars score a season sweep, Ovechkin makes history, yet again, and more.

The Dallas Stars gave up an embarrassing loss in St. Paul on Saturday, and now they have a long bye week to think about they’ve done.

The Athletic’s Sean Shapiro has devoted his latest 20/20 post to a laundry list of issues the Stars needed to address long before the 7-0 shutout at the hands of the Minnesota Wild. First among them is even-strength scoring — bad under former coach Jim Montgomery and, shockingly, even worse under interim bench boss Rick Bowness:

Under Jim Montgomery, the Stars scored 63 even-strength goals in 31 games, an average of 2.03 per game. Under Rick Bowness’ guidance, the Stars have 27 even-strength goals in 17 games, a 1.58 average.

Things went from an offensive slog to a complete shutdown at even strength after the coaching change, even if the win-loss record isn’t indicative of major problems.

Under the circumstances, the unexpected availability of Gerard Gallant should get more consideration than it has, argues Shapiro:

...[P]lans can change, right? Don’t the Stars at least owe it to themselves during the bye week to take a hard look at all the options? If this team believes it can contend for the Stanley Cup, and it has the defense and goaltending to do so, shouldn’t they look into an upgrade that fixes the biggest issue?

To be fair, the Miro Heiskanen-less defense didn’t help matters. Stars fans were hoping for a better result to celebrate Stephen Johns’ first NHL game in 22 months, and as it turns out, so was he:

“Not really much positive take from 7-0, even under these circumstances,” Johns said. “I mean, yeah, it was good to get out and play. But losing like that sucks.”

Johns said he wished he could put the skates back on and go and play again right away. He also said he felt like he needs to be in better shape and will treat the upcoming bye week like a personal training camp. He’ll skate in Frisco and try to catch up when it comes to game shape.

“I was breathing pretty hard out there today,” Johns said. “Not really a break for me, which I’m fine with.”

There’s more behind the paywall. [The Athletic DFW]

Stars Stuff

He’s back. Now here’s how Stephen Johns plans to crush bye week.

Around The League(s)

#Death Notes

  • Patrick Kane scored his 1,000th NHL point and helped give the Chicago Blackhawks even more to celebrate: a 5-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets. [Second City Hockey]/

How do you follow up overtaking Teemu Selanne on the all-time goals list, plus a hat trick? If you’re Alex Ovechkin, you overtake Mario Lemieux, and score another hat trick.

This is sarcasm, right? (It reads like sarcasm, but you know...Twitter.)

Speaking of Gerard Gallant, he understands that plans change — but he’s “far from done” with the NHL.

Here’s an advance look at how the NHL plans to turn All-Star Week into must-see TV.

Here’s an idea: Clone Wes McCauley and make him ref every NHL game, ever.

Greetings From Scenic Cedar Park

The Texas Stars completed a season sweep of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins with A big win at home.

Nick Caamano and Jake Oettinger nailed it down in the shootout.


Justin Williams scored the shootout winner in his return to the Carolina Hurricanes, then led the Military Appreciation Night Storm Surge. Sometimes the script writes itself. Enjoy.