When momentum is going one direction, it can be hard to stop and difficult to reverse it in your favor. And right now it just looks like momentum is going against the Stars. Last night none of the breaks or lucky bounces seemed to go the Stars way. It does not help that they came out and looked like garbage for the first two periods of the game. They were manhandled and outplayed easily for the first 40 minutes of the game before attempting to play for the final period. A flip of Thursday night when the Stars played strong for the first two periods before the game got out of control and bad officiating along with an inability to capitalize on chances cost Dallas the game. Last night it was just them. They couldn’t get anything going for most of the game.
The Anaheim Ducks beat the Dallas Stars again by a final of 4-2, but the game had less scoring and the only reason it was even close in the third was goaltending. The Ducks had a 30-14 shot advantage after the first two periods, and that should be able to tell you plenty about the start of the game. That is if you did not watch, because if you watched that game at all then you could tell Kari Lehtonen again was stepping up and keeping Dallas alive. Somehow though, the Stars got a goal in the first period and went late into the game with it only being 1-1. But the Ducks top line scored a fancy goal in front of the net when Grossman was unable to react and took a 2-1 lead early in the third period. The Stars get some chances, get a little bit more time attacking the Ducks net. But just like the Kings game, the Stars only get a few prime chances and fail to score on any of them. It was hard to watch. Robidas takes a bad penalty for delay of game, and the Ducks capitalize. Yeah, that thing Dallas can’t seem to do over the last couple of weeks. 3-1 and from there game just seemed out of reach. Stars get one with over three minutes to go, and then even a PP to tie the game possibly. But nope, another wasted powerplay and another wasted chance.
Now Dallas has to take the few days until their next game, which is back home against the Ducks on Tuesday, to figure something out. It is not just powerplay issues anymore. The penalty kill was good for a stretch when they won three games to end their big home stretch, but over this three game losin streak it has allowed timely goals to the opponents. The scoring has all but disappeared, and even the top line has gone cold. James Neal hit a pair of posts in the 2nd period, both times with a chance to take a lead. Loui Eriksson has had three excellent chances over the last two nights that were chances he can and should finish. At least one or two of those, but all three did not end with that red light going off. Richards got a goal late last night, making it 3-1. But then Dallas got a powerplay with a couple of minutes to go with a chance to tie the score. Instead no one could come through, and the Ducks pocket an empty-netter to end the game. All of these things are worrying me right now. Heck the only thing that looks good on this team consistently over the last couple of weeks is Lehtonen and Jamie Benn when he is on the ice. Whoever these Stars were over the first 2-3 weeks seems to have left and now there are a lot of questions popping up again. The top two lines have been silenced on these last three games and even somewhat for a couple of games before that. Crawford needs to get these guys together, or find something within these players to come out. Because after a great start things have slowly deteriorated and they need to start changing back soon.