Dallas Stars Shut Out Minnesota Wild In Game 5 Homecoming, 4-0
Oettinger takes first shutout by any goalie in the postseason so far, Hintz sets record, and Seguin shines.
The Dallas Stars brought it back home for the fifth game in a scrappy Round 1 series with the Minnesota Wild. Could they follow through on Sunday's big win in St. Paul?
Let's talk about it.
Can the Stars not start the game by giving their fans a group coronary? It took less than two minutes for Sam Steel to get a breakaway chance that fortunately didn't result in a shot on goal.
On the other hand, it took less than three minutes for Marcus Foligno to do something stupid. He went knee-on-knee against Radek Faksa, sending him down the tunnel, and earned a game misconduct for his trouble. Fortunately, it only took eight seconds on the ensuing five-minute major for Tyler Seguin to eat Filip Gustavsson's donut, with a little help from Jason Robertson and Roope Hintz.
The inevitable makeup call came soon after, with Miro Heiskanen heading to the box on an iffy interference minor against Steel. Kirill Kaprizov put in work to get the Wild's first shot on goal, but Oettinger was ready for him.
It was good to see Faksa back on the ice nine minutes into the period. It was even better to see Jason Robertson get on the stat sheet – once again on the power play, after Jake Middleton earned two minutes in the sin bin for cross-checking Seguin. Heiskanen and Hintz (again) provided the helpers.
The Wild bore down in the waning minutes, but the Stars thwarted them at the blueline again and again.
Shots on goal:
- Dallas: 11
- Minnesota: 5
Score: Dallas 2 - Minnesota 0
Mason Marchment must have felt left out during the first-period action, because he wasted no time at all in caging the first goal of the second, at 1:19. Donut Man delivered the primary assist, with Hintz getting his third point of the evening on the secondary – and it was great to see some 5-on-5 scoring.
Former Star Mats Zuccarello went to the box moments later after tripping Ty Dellandrea, but the Minnesota penalty kill kicked in and held the score at 3-0. His return to the ice gave the Wild their first power play of the game when Max Domi took a penalty for cross-checking him.
The Stars' own kill unit held up, but it took only moments for Ryan Suter to put them a man down again for holding Kaprizov. Faksa, sacrificing the body in a big way this evening, blocked a prime chance by John Klingberg and ended his shift in obvious pain. Matching minors against Thomas Harley and Matt Dumba, both for roughing, spoiled the mood even more.
The testiness was on the verge of getting out of hand when Connor Dewar gave Heiskanen a late hip check midway through the period. Ryan Reaves did his best to pick a fight with Hintz, but Roope contented himself with giving Dewar a piece of his mind the old-fashioned way (i.e., chirping him).
The PIM-fest continued with a call against Esa Lindell for interference on Matt Dumba just before the media timeout. I don't care who you are, you don't want to go up against John Klingberg on the first power-play unit – but Oettinger protected his net like, well, Jake Oettinger.
In fact, the adorable sea creature's performance handily mooted the Wild's second-period shots-on-goal advantage.
Shots on goal:
- Dallas: 8 (total 19)
- Minnesota: 13 (total 18)
Is any lead safe? It's an old Stars fan tic to start worrying about score effects when they take the ice with a three-goal advantage in the final frame.
It didn't help that the Wild came out looking for anything to swing the momentum and clearly loaded for Hintz. Gustav Nyquist took the first penalty of the period after tripping Lindell, but the Stars didn't convert on the man advantage.
Things got sillier when Ryan Hartman got called for roughing Dellandrea, but Delly took a matching minor for embellishment. (Really? "It was an actual penalty, but chill, bro, you look desperate"?) But the two minutes of 4-on-4 amounted to nothing, and Oettinger kept doing his thing until the penultimate media timeout.
The rest of the period saw the Stars deliver some of the solid 5-on-5 play they've made their signature this season. With just over five minutes to go, the Wild pulled Gustavsson, but that worked out about as well as everything else for them. Dellandrea won empty-net roulette, with a little help from Domi.
Shots on goal:
- Dallas: 7 (25 total)
- Minnesota: 9 (27 total)
Otter walking off with his second NHL postseason shutout – and the first for any NHL goalie so far this postseason – was the cherry on the cake of this homecoming. Seguin getting a donut in his 100th Stanley Cup playoffs game was as sweet as extra glaze.
Meanwhile, all on the quiet, Roope Hintz has reset yet another milestone. His three points in Game 5 brought him to 11 points in the series so far – a new franchise record.
The Victory Green Gang has a chance to shut the door on this series in Game 6 on Friday, time TBD. See you then.