So I’m visiting my family up in the Kansas City area for the holidays, so there are a few things you need to know before reading this recap.
- Because the last time I had seen him was at his wedding, I had carved out some “quality” time to spend with a friend from college henceforth known as Asshole Friend
- We were drinking Boulevard Nutcracker Ales all night. If you haven’t had it, you should go find it, as it’s delicious, but it does happen to be alcoholic.
I tried to scribble a few notes down while we caught up, but I’m sure I only caught half the action. To help with that other half, I’ve asked Asshole Friend to provide some additional commentary.
All numbers 5v5, all scoring situations, and taken from the excellent war-on-ice game tracker.
- A Division win!!! Do I need to say much more? Probably not, but I will anyway. Dear Lord, that was necessary. To even have a prayer of making the playoffs, the Stars need to start winning basically every game, and this Divisional drought was downright embarrassing.
- Asshole Friend says “I don’t know much about the Stars playoff chances, but the Royals went to the World Series, so now I believe anything is possible.”
- The power play may not have been the flurry of chances that everyone wants to see (only 5 SOG in 6 minutes), but for once, they made what chances they did have count, with two goals.
- Asshole Friend said about the Demers goal “I haven’t seen a back door that wide open since I stopped watching porn.”
- Lindy Ruff might know what he’s doing, just a little bit. Yesterday, I wrote a piece on Travis Morin and basically insinuated that he should be playing over Garbutt or Moen, and then both of them decided to prove me wrong and score in the first period. It’s cool guys, I have learned to admit when I’m wrong.
- Sidebar: I’m not wrong, Morin’s awesome, and I still would have him play over Moen in most situations. Just, obviously, it worked out ok last night.
- Jamie Benn is very attractive when he’s angry.
- Asshole Friend says “My wife agrees.”
The Más o Menos
- Kari let in two goals in the first period, but then really seemed to find his groove. He was good during the third, especially at the very end when the Blues pulled Allen for the extra attacker. Kari stood up to the pressure, and was even able to create some counter attacking opportunities through controlled rebounds.
- Asshole Friend says, “You know when I played in my old league, I was the reason they had to start tracking PIMs for goalies.”
- Sidebar: Clearly, he should’ve watched the game against Vancouver
- While we did let in a goal on the PK, again, the Stars aggressive killing created some shorthanded opportunities and made AF & I double check that we were actually on the PK.
The No Bueno
- Well, this is a little different conversation than last game, and obviously, the scoring difference was all special teams, not the 5v5.
- Sidebar: It’s pretty concerning to see Daley/Jokipakka down in the 20% range, especially since they got the most offensive zone starts of all D pairs.
- Sidebar 2: We had an abysmal faceoff percent 5v5 (only 40% won), with Spezza being the main issue, winning only 1 of 13 faceoffs at even strength. This probably contributed greatly to our CF% being down, as the Blues are a very good puck protecting team.
- As good as the defense has been offensively, the Stars still seem to be missing some of the basics of you know, actual defending. At several points in the game Asshole Friend was aghast at our positioning and didn’t understand why I looked so resigned to the life I have chosen.
- Stuff like this, which I should expect after 12 years of friendship.
- Asshole Friend: I do follow the Blues Ice Girls on Facebook.
- Me: Ugh, the Dallas Stars have Ice Girls, too.
- Asshole Friend: Annnnnnnnnd now I follow them on Facebook. *Holds up his phone, it’s a picture of one of the girls in her Ice Girls uniform* This is what I want for Christmas.
- Me: Dude, you just got married.
- Asshole Friend: And I’m Jewish.