Talk about a game that a team really needs to try to forget and move on from. Right? The Dallas Stars wasted a chance in a “4-point game” and gaining some points when other playoff teams lost, but just as bad is the fact that the San Jose Sharks delivered some blows to the Stars line-up. As it stands right now, Loui Eriksson is considered doubtful for tonight’s game against Chicago after taking that high hit from d-man Douglas Murray in the 2nd period Tuesday. Although the Stars have yet to diagnose him, it was a high hit and he did not return for the rest of the game. The Stars are taking it day-to-day, but I would not be surprised if he misses 2-3 games to at least let me make sure he is okay. Stars fans and players are of course hoping he does not have a concussion, or that dreaded label of “concussion-like symptoms” or whatever the wish to call it, and that it is just a matter of needing a couple of days.
And while talking about hits, there were two other hits in that game by the Sharks and one by the Stars that were all questionable. While most Stars fans want Murray to be suspended for his hit on Eriksson, I have something to say that most will dislike. I wouldn’t suspend him for that. While I would have have no problem with a call or a short suspension if the league did hand it out, it was really something I see as a head hit. Murray led with his shoulder and make contact with Loui high, but don’t directly at his head. Just a case of a rough hit and one player reaching for the puck as another looks to deliver a hit. Now later in the game Murray delivered another hit to Vincour and that one looked more questionable to me. Vincour was skating toward Murray after Murray got rid of the puck, and while he was coming at Murray, Murray used his momentum and size and again went high. It definitely looked more like a headshot then the Eriksson hit, but it was just swept under and barely even talked. I think something should have been called on the hit at the time, but again I am not sure about a suspension.
But of course the big talked about one was the elbow by Dany Heatley to the head of Stars forward Steve Ott. Late in the game Ott passed the puck out of his own end and was turned towards his net, when Heatley skated by and just flipped an elbow up at Ott. Heatley since received a two game suspension from the league, and in my opinion this one deserved more. He made no attempt to play the puck or even just throw a check at Otter. He just simply skated by and tries to elbow him in the head. I have heard an argument that Ott embellished it a bit and flopped, but even if Ott did a little it was still a dirty play that does not belong in the game and Ott was down for a minute. I would have given him 4-5 games. Here is a link over to PuckDaddy where they broke down the game and had video for a couple of the hits: Link
So now the Stars have to continue their huge homestand, and have to forget quickly how the last two games have gone. Two straight without any points and now three more playoff teams coming starting with Chicago tonight. Eriksson is probably out, but Ott and Vincour look good to go. Huge puck drop at the AAC tonight and the Stars need to dig in and play 60 minutes of solid hockey. Look for the pre-game post earlier today on BlackoutDallas.