I’ve had all night to sleep on it and I still don’t think I’ve fully processed the events of last night’s game yet. The fact that we gave up a two goal lead. That they scored with the extra man. That we won in OT. THAT WE WON IN OT ON A PENALTY SHOT GIVING A STARTING BACK UP GOALIE HIS FIRST WIN IN OVER A YEAR.
It’s a lot to take in, so I apologize for the mostly incoherent rambling to follow.
All numbers from war-on-ice, 5v5 and Score Adjusted.
- While most of this chart belongs at the bottom of the recap, the Pitbull Line was back last night – and they dominated, helping keep their most consistent matchup (and the most effective line in the game) Mike Ribeiro, James Neal, and Filip Forsberg at bay. They pulled the hardest defensive zone assignment (no surprise there) but this time, THEY OWNED IT. With how ineffective our top line was rendered last night at the 5v5 (only one scoring chance between the 3 of them), this is the kind of play we have needed from them all season.
- Side Note: Other very effective line last night was the “4th Line Best Line” of Moen-Fiddler-Sceviour. MOEN SCORED ANOTHER GOAL. THAT’S TWO IN A ROW. AND THEN HE GOT AN ASSIST ON SCEVIOUR’S GOAL. TRAVIS MOEN HAD A TWO POINT GAME LAST NIGHT.
- Side Note: Our power play was actually good(?????) last night, scoring on their only opportunity on this beautiful Seguin goal (which tied his CAREER HIGH!!!). The PK was similarly efficient, not allowing any SOG when Nashville had the man advantage.
- Jhonas Enroth was in great form last night and basically played just like he had…when he played the Stars (in the game that I’m sure convinced Nill to trade for him). None of the goals that went in were the squishy rotten kind, and he made several key saves in the 3rd to keep the Stars in the lead as much as he could. He definitely deserved the win, and I think we’ll see a lot more of him as the season winds down, given his pending UFA status this summer. I think there are certainly worse back ups we could sign than one who looks capable of anything.
- We won in OT again!!! Earlier this year, OT was definitely just another disappointment waiting to happen. But since that first Rangers game where we shook that monkey off our back , the Stars have been much better on the 4v4. Last night, they matched the Preds’s 2 SOG with 2 shots of their own before Cody Eakin had his stick slashed out of his hands on a breakaway. You know what happened next? Yes, because I spoiled it at the beginning of the recap.
The Más o Menos
- Lindy Ruff scratched Nemeth last night “because his play had tailed off”. While this is true – he went from posting an 80% Corsi on 3/25 to 50%, then 48%, then 45% and finally a 42% vs St Louis – he also went from playing with John Klingberg to Trevor Daley. Since Daley’s return, the highest Corsi any of his partners have posted is Nemeth’s 48% versus Vancouver. Poor Jokipakka got jerked around last night and finished the game with a 37.2% CF%. His partner? You guessed it. Ruff, if you’re reading this, yes, you have a weak link on D, but it ain’t the rookies.
- The Stars have literally the worst record in the NHL when the opposing team pulls their goalie. We have let in 9 3rd period goals on the 6v5, and have a 36% Fenwick For% (in that same timeframe). The next lowest team is Pittsburgh, with 40%, and they at least have scored more empty netters than goals allowed. I don’t know what it is that makes us just completely lose our minds at the end of games, but it has GOT to be fixed.
In the end, the Stars still haven’t been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, but with only 3 games remaining and 6 points to go, it’s time to turn our attention to other things we can accomplish this year. Like getting Jamie Benn the Art Ross. We believe in you, boo!