Well, the Stars have had a good week or so since my last blog.
The Stars had wins against Calgary, New York, and Nashville, while they lost a close one to Colorado.
The highlight of those games was without a doubt the Stars-Rangers match-up.
The Rangers were supposed to be a fairly good team this year, and at times, they were. The game was expected to be close.
However, after a relatively close first half of the first period, the Stars took control. Leading 3-1 going into the second, Nik Zherdev’s minor scare of the game with a goal was quickly silenced as the Mike Ribeiro scored not long after. The third period ensured that Dallas would have a win, as they scored 6 unanswered goals to dominate the Rangers 10-2. Mike Ribeiro, James Neal, Steve Ott, Matt Niskanen, Fabian Brunnstrom, Mike Modano, Jere Lehtinen, and Darryl Sydor all had multi-point games, and Brian Sutherby and Brad Richards each contributed a goal.
The Calgary game wasn’t quite as exciting, but it helped Dallas continue their push for a playoff spot. A 3-1 victory was sparked by power-play goals from James Neal and Jere Lehtinen. The Stars power-play has vastly improved since the start of the season, and is a big reason why the Stars have gotten themselves back into the playoff race. Solid goaltending by Marty Turco also helped.
The game against Nashville, also a win for Dallas, was again spurred by strong special teams play. The Stars didn’t allow a power-play goal, and Brian Sutherby, who’s been picking up his offense with 3 goals in 5 games, managed to score a short-handed goal. Brad Richards popped in a goal on the power-play, Mark Parrish potted a rare shot that turned out to be the game winner, and Steve Ott tied his career high goal-total with an empty-net goal. And once again, Marty Turco, who’s goaltending has been phenomenal as of late, had a great night.
Looking ahead, Dallas’ schedule for February is jam-packed with home games. This will definitely help the Stars in the standings if they can keep up their outstanding play on home ice.