Last night’s game was a little bit of a letdown, and not on the part of our boys in green. You see, minutes before the game started, Winnipeg clinched a 2-0 victory over Minnesota, mathematically eliminating both the Stars and the Sharks. Even so, one team responded decisively, not letting the early end to the season affect their play. The Stars dominated the Sharks with a 5-1 victory, but the post game comments were less than celebratory.
All numbers from war-on-ice, 5v5, and Score Adjusted, unless otherwise noted.
- Jamie “The Alpha Male” Benn was on fire again last night, scoring 2 goals and picking up three points overall. This puts him at a new career high of 80 points, and only one point behind Sidney “Two Time Art Ross Winner” Crosby. Jamie’s points per game since the All Star Break are highest in the league (tied with Ovi) and he’s proven over and over recently exactly why he’s the captain of this team.
- Side Note: This game is an excellent example of why one should use score adjusted data. If you look at the raw shot attempts (which is what most commentators do) you would see a much different story: San Jose & Dallas were split 50/50. But Score Adjusted, the Stars had 55% possession, which honestly fits the narrative and what we saw much better.
- Side Note 2: Colton Sceviour had a huge game, scoring on his very first shift, and then putting up 3 individual scoring chances, most of them from right in front of the net. He’s definitely showcasing the talent he’s always had, but you have to wonder if he’s going to stay in Dallas with all the young guys nipping at his heels.
- Enroth picked up his second win in a row as a starting backup goalie, and looked even more comfortable than he did the other night. 5v5 scoring chances against were pretty low last night at 19, which also speaks to the better defense the team is playing. Jamie called the last few games this season a “mini training camp”, so hopefully we’ll keep seeing both Enroth and this new, defensively minded Stars team for the next two games.
The Más o Menos
- The power play scored two goals again last night, in what was a very penalty filled game (Roussel got into a fight on the second shift, Jamie almost got into a fight after Tyler got hit again), but it just reminded everyone of how terrible our home record is. You see, we’re 4th in the NHL in Power Play % on the road, but 28th at home.
- Side Note: The scrum after Tyler got hit provided some of the best commentary of the game from Razor, who I’m 90% sure writes for Amazon Worlds in his free time.
- Ryan Garbutt took a really terrible penalty, throwing a dangerous elbow on Matt Irwin. I’m fucking over his emotional penalties. I will give him that he definitely tried his best to apologize for the mistake as he jetted out of the penalty box.
- Val Nichushkin was scratched last night and we don’t know why. Hopefully it’s just routine rest, because he’s now played 5 games in a row, if you count his AHL stint. Still, it’s worrying, because either his hip (or some other injury) is troubling him, or Lindy was unhappy with his play. You have to believe it’s the former, because Val’s 2 games back were pretty impressive.
- Patrik Nemeth was also scratched for a second game in a row, and frankly, this is getting annoying. Because seriously…SERIOUSLY we’re going with Trevor “Possession Disaster” Daley to help drive our new defensive “training camp”?
- Side Note: IN CASE YOU MISSED IT UP THERE
In summary, we’re going golfing but the season won’t be a waste, especially if we can get Jamie some hardware and Tyler to 40 goals. It’s a stretch, but it’s very much possible, and I’m honestly excited for the offseason, because we know how much I love to nerd out about being an armchair GM.