Dallas Stars Out-Shoot Leafs 44-26, But Fall 4-1


The Dallas Stars entered Monday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs with a three-game win streak.

Earlier in the season, the Stars had a five-game win streak, and were looking to match and even surpass that previous winning tenure.

But the current streak came to an end, as Toronto won 4-1 for their first home win of the season, and their sixth out of the last seven against the Stars.

Game Recap

First Period

After no real chances for seven minutes, Toronto got on the board first, as Brad Boyes started the night’s scoring off with a goal 8:24 into the period.

Just 54 seconds later, however, Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn scored his league-leading 10th goal to tie things back up at one.

There were several offensive opportunities for both teams in the remaining half of the period.

The Maple Leafs were the ones who found the back of the net for a second time, and with just 4:12 left in the period. But head Coach Lindy Ruff saw something fishy, and used his first coach’s challenge of the season.

It paid off.

Toronto was ruled offside, and the goal was called off. After the first 20 minutes, it was knotted up 1-1 at the Air Canada Centre.

Second Period

The Maple Leafs only needed 21 seconds to make up for the goal that was taken back. Joffrey Lupul beat Antti Niemi to retake the lead, 2-1.

For Dallas, the offensive opportunities were there. Halfway through the period, the shots were 21-12 in Dallas’ favor.

But with 7:15 left, Joffrey Lupul scored his second goal of the period, increasing the Toronto lead to 3-1.

The Stars had 31 shots after 40 minutes, so creating chances was not the issue for Dallas.

They just couldn’t find the back of the net, and trailed 3-1 heading into the final period.

Third Period

The Stars came out of the intermission very aggressive, desperately looking for a goal.

The perfect opportunity came with 13:53 left in the period, when Valeri Nichushkin was granted a penalty shot.

However, Val failed to capitalize on the opportunity for his first goal of the season, shooting wide.

It was just that kind of night for the Stars.

With 2:07 left, the Dallas Stars pulled Niemi for one last shot at a comeback.

The Stars had 32 shots in the final two periods, but failed to find the back of the net.

Instead, a John Klingberg penalty wiped out the man-advantage.

And to top off the night, Morgan Rielly scored with just 15 seconds left in the game, wrapping up the two points for Toronto.


Defensive woes

Whether it was Johnny Oduya, Jordie Benn, or Patrik Nemeth, the entire defensive situation for the Stars was horrid in Toronto.

Antti Niemi did not have the ideal game in the crease, to say the least.

But the defense from Dallas on Monday was just plain bad. The d-core has done a fairly decent job all season, but tonight was not their night.

Avoid the penalties

The Stars had five penalties on the night, and the Leafs capitalized on two of them.

Statistically, the Stars won just about every category.

But this one, which is by far one of the most important, Toronto took advantage.

And it hurt the Dallas Stars. Badly.

Block more shots

The Stars only blocked seven shots tonight, compared to 16 for the Maple Leafs.

Dallas can’t be afraid to jump in front of the puck.

Little categories like blocked shots can actually shift the game entirely.

This is just one of the things the Stars have room to improve on.

More from Blackout Dallas

It’s just one game, and the Stars still have a wondrous record of 9-3-0.

It’s no time to panic. Dallas just has to continue to do what they have done for the entire season thus far.

And that is play good hockey.

Next: Dallas Stars Will Experience Central Division Rigor All Year

The Dallas Stars hit the ice again tomorrow night, as they take on the Bruins at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts at 6:00.