Dallas Stars Stay Alive With Big Win Against ‘Hawks


119. 0. 94. Final. 4

The Dallas Stars (34-28-10) converted two of three power play chances against the second best penalty kill in hockey, and sent the Chicago Blackhawks (43-22-6) packing with a score of 4-0 on Saturday night at American Airlines Center. The win closed the season series for the clubs, with Dallas going 2-2-1 for five points against their Central Division foes. The shutout was Kari Lehtonen’s fifth of the season, and he made 33 stops.


The Blackhawks started off with an early opportunity, but failed to convert on back-to-back power play chances. The Stars would draw first blood, however, as Alex Goligoski slid a beautiful pass to Patrick Eaves, who went top-shelf to take an early lead. Dallas would later make the most of their first man-advantage opportunity, with Tyler Seguin knocking in a wide-open rebound after Jason Spezza’s bid at the 16:02 mark. Both teams would enter the locker room with nine shots and two power play chances, but with Dallas holding a 2-0 lead.

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  • The Stars would crank it up a notch in the second, and trun in a complete team effort to keep the lead intact. For fifteen minutes, the club raced in circles around the Blackhawks, made crisp passes, put bodies on the puck, and all in all outplayed their foes. The ‘Hawks would gather themselves towards the close of the frame and manage to threaten some serious chances, but it would be Lehtonen’s turn to step up. The period ended with no scores or penalties. The Stars did miss a couple solid chances to add to their lead, though. Cody Eakin couldn’t gather a pass from Jamie Benn at point blank range, as well as Curtis McKenzie failed on two occasions to get enough wood on rubber after receiving a prime dish.

    Six minutes into the third, Shawn Horcoff tallied the second power play goal of the night for the Stars, as he deflected a shot from Goligoski to make it 3-0. Chicago had a chance to get back in it when Jordie Benn was called for tripping Brandon Saad on the breakaway, but Lehtonen would not be solved. At the 9:32 mark, Eaves won the puck battle in the corner and hit Spezza for the final marker of the evening.

    Thoughts and Observations

    This was a solid team win for the Stars, where everyone filled their roles and left no flaws exposed. A little late? I guess we’ll just have to find out.

    Jordie Benn and Jason Demers continue to put bodies in front of the puck, and also to clear plays and eliminate chances. Many thought that the senior Benn wouldn’t be wearing Victory Green after the trade deadline, but his play has improved tremendously in weeks past. Maybe coach Ruff saw something we didn’t?

    With Colorado inactive and Los Angeles and San Jose both losing, the Stars gained major ground in the Wild Card race. The win pulls Dallas into a three-way tie with the Avs and Sharks, with the Avs holding a game in hand. Winnipeg, however, kept the pace with a 3-0 win against Washington, and remain eight points ahead of Dallas for the final playoff spot.

    Tonight’s win was only the second home win against a Central Division opponent this season.

    The Dallas Stars are back in action on Monday night to host the Buffalo Sabres! Check back to Blackout Dallas for more news and updates!