Rintz and Repeat: Stars Win With Two Shorthanded Goals from Roope Hintz

Such a great turnaround from the Stars.

After a day off to lick their wounds, the Dallas Stars found themselves back home in the American Airlines Center to face off against the St. Louis Blues, their first meeting since before the covid pause.

The Blues have had a strong start to the season but have been struggling of late, including regulation a  3-2 loss to the Arizona Coyotes. This win for the Coyotes was one of only two wins this season. (Before their win tonight.)

First Period

The Stars had some great early chances, most notably on a turnover in the Blues’ zone. Jacob Peterson had the puck in the paint but whiffed on the delivery.

On the other end of the ice, Jake Oettinger, in the lineup after coming in on Thursday as a late relief for Anton Khuodbin, made a doorstep save on Vladimir Tarasenko before punching away his rebound.

The Stars petered out a bit here, chasing the Blues and the puck in a manner very reminiscent of Thursday’s game, but still weren’t without some bright spots. Jason Robertson had a beautiful chance off some great work by Roope Hintz in the neutral zone, but Binnington made the save.

The real momentum shift in the first happened when Torey Krug was called for a holding penalty against Joel Kiviranta, who did some great work along the boards with Jani Hakanpaa to draw the call.

Seconds into the power play, on the Blues first clearing attempt, Justin Faulk drove the puck right into the linesman’s knee. He left the ice with some assistance and the rest of the first progressed with three officials on the ice.

Robertson had another great chance on in front of the net but was again saved by Binnington. The Stars had four shots on the power play, and then outshot the Blues 10-2 over the next ten minutes, but weren’t able to get through the Blues goalie, who didn’t seem to be having to put in a lot of effort. Many of the Stars’ shots hit him center mass.

The Stars had to kill a penalty after Peterson was called for hooking, but the penalty kill was firing on all cylinders tonight.

Shots: Stars 13, Blues 11
Goals: Stars 0, Blues 0

Second Period

The second period was played almost entirely by special teams, with 12 minutes of penalty time and none of it overlapping.

Oskar Sundqvist started it off with a holding penalty on Radek Faksa. Alexander Radulov had a breakaway opportunity with the man advantage but was mauled on his way down the ice by Colton Parayko and given a penalty shot, but Binnington saved that. The Stars ended up with five quality scoring chances on the power play but nothing to show for it on the scoreboard.

After a defensive zone turnover by Michael Raffl, Jamie Benn had to make a diving backcheck to break up a play by David Perron in front of the net.

Tarasenko got called for a tripping penalty against Joel Kiviranta, putting the Stars back on the power play.

Five seconds into the power play, Ryan Suter gets the puck at the top of the zone and blasts it on net. He’s initially credited with the goal that ensued, but later review credited Jamie Benn with redirecting it with some unnamed part of his forearm. The goal was reviewed with Blues coaches and the officials, but it’s not challengeable with a coach’s challenge and the call on the ice stood.

The Stars almost lost the lead on a breakaway by the Blues, but some brilliant backchecking disrupted that chance right before Roope Hintz gave the Blues another power play opportunity with a cross-check.

Oettinger made some great saves on the power play, but the best look in those two minutes came from Raffl on a short-handed breakaway.

Robertson was then called for slashing, putting the Blues back on the power play. Again, the best chance on the power play came from the Stars when Raffl again had a breakaway opportunity and this time had Roope Hintz with him. Raffle passed across the zone and Hintz buried it behind Binnington.

The next penalty went to Radek Faksa for tripping against Klim Kostin. Seven seconds in, Oettinger makes a save on a hard shot from David Perron but couldn’t control the rebound. The odd bounce came up and over his head and then back into the net. The goal was credited to Brandon Saad.

With a loose puck in front of the Blues net, Torey Krug threw himself on the grenade and took an interference penalty against Joe Pavelski, who is still just two goals away from 400 in his career. Nothing great happened on the power play. Another scrum in front of the net got the Stars a lot more high danger chances, but nothing went through Binnington.

Shots: Stars 29, Blues 23
Goals: Stars 2, Blues 1

Third Period

Jamie Benn opened the third period with two back-to-back penalties, one a slashing penalty against Jordan Kyrou and one a high sticking against Parayko.

On the first penalty, Luke Glendening was without his stick and blocked with his knee. He went down the tunnel but was back on the ice shortly after. On the second penalty, the Stars rinse and repeated their previous short-handed goal, but this time added a nifty elevation from Raffl on the cross-ice pass.

That’s also the first time in Dallas Stars history and the fourth time in franchise history that a player has scored two shorthanded goals in one game.

Oettinger helped keep the Blues at one goal after a flurry of chances in front of the Stars net.

The Blues pulled their goalie with three minutes left to go. The Stars rang the puck off the post. Faksa followed the rebound up but missed. Jamie Benn buried an empty-net goal for his second of the night to cement the victory.

The Stars had a big bounce back to make after their 7-2 drubbing in Minnesota on Thursday, but they looked like an entirely different team tonight, and this time it wasn’t against an exhausted team on the second half of a back-to-back.

Shots: Stars 33, Blues 36
Goals: Stars 4, Blues 1

The Stars will be back in the American Airlines Center on Tuesday night against the Edmonton Oilers. Puck drop will be at 7:30 pm CST.