Lehtonen Leads Dallas Stars To Victory In Philly


1. 68. 2. 119. Final

The Dallas Stars managed to leave the Wells Fargo Center with two points on Tuesday night, beating the Philadephia Flyers 2-1 in regulation. Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen turned in a masterful performance, stopping 25 of 26 shots faced. The win brings the Stars to 70 points on the season, and keeps their playoff hopes alive with 15 games remaining on the schedule.


The Stars came out collectively sluggish, most notably when Brayden Schenn redirected his brother Luke‘s shot past Lehtonen on Philly’s second shot of the game. The Flyers would control play early, ringing up two 2-on-1 opportunities while down a man, and moving the puck with ease while Dallas’ Colton Sceviour was in the box for high-sticking. Brett Ritchie would find the equalizer, though, with his fifth marker of the season. The close-range goal was queued up by a slick pass from Curtis Mckenzie to spring Ritchie. Dallas’ found their legs after the goal, and outpaced the flyers for the remainder of the frame. Likewise, Lehtonen would find his form with a couple of clutch stops. Philadelphia took a 14-9 advantage in shots into the locker room after twenty.

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  • The second period saw both netminders elevate their games. The Flyers’ Steve Mason was pelted with 16 shots in the frame, including a magnificent sequence at the end of the period in which he stopped three shots while Dallas controlled the puck for more than a minute. With Jason Demers out, Lehtonen was backstopping a d-man corps featuring four rookies, and he rose to the challenge. About midway through the period, Brayden Schenn found an open look on Lehtonen, who swatted the bid away and then recovered in time to stop Claude Giroux’s rebound try up close. The rink opened up as the period went on, and through forty minutes the score remained tied at one.

    The Stars would take their first and only lead of the game with 6:10 remaining in regulation, as Sceviour patiently waited for a lane before finding Vernon Fiddler for the game winner. The Flyers made a fruitless attempt to tie with the empty net, but the Stars would hold their slim lead to take the full two points.

    Thoughts and Observations

    This was Kari Lehtonen’s first career victory against Philadelphia. His career record against the Flyers is now 1-12-1.

    Despite the loss, Steve Mason was very impressive, stopping 37 of 39 shots faced.

    The four rookie d-men, John Klingberg, Jyrki Jokipakka, Jamie Oleksiak, and Patrik Nemeth did as good a job as one could reasonably expect. The Flyers boast the 4th best power play in the league, and the Stars killed all three chances, as well as a power play’s worth of empty net time to end the game. As expected, they gave up a few solid chances, but Lehtonen cleaned up well and there were no glaringly poor decisions or turnovers.

    The Stars are now perched eight points behind the Jets, who at the time of this writing are losing 4-1 in the third against the Blues. Assuming the score holds, the Stars will have gained ground in the Wild Card race, although the Wild and Kings are currently poised to grab two points as well.

    The Dallas Stars will head to Raleigh, NC to pay a visit to the Hurricanes on Thursday night. Check back to Blackout Dallas for more news and updates!