After sitting through that abomination of a game against the Anaheim Ducks, I need to get something off of my chest. That was not the Dallas Stars team that I know and love out there on the ice Wednesday night in Anaheim. I’ve seen the Stars on an “off night” and the performance was worse than that. It felt like the Stars werent playing the cohesive team hockey they’d been playing for most of the season. Let’s go over the lame-duck effort that the Stars had on the ice on Wednesday.
Dallas Stars Abysmal Game: Body language
The body language the Stars had in the first period was just horrendous. They came out of the gate “sleep skating” against the Ducks. I feel bad for Scott Wedgewood because it felt like 5-1 out there for him in the first ten minutes of the game.
There’s really not a good way to describe what the overall body language was for the Stars. It was like the team (minus Wedgewood and Jake Oettinger) basically huddled up and decided they were going to skate for the required 60 minutes and hit the showers. I don’t care whether the opponent is last in the conference or top of their division, you go out there as a hockey team and play all 60 minutes to the best of your ability.
Dallas Stars Abysmal Game: Leadership from the veterans
Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin have got to start chipping in the scoring department if we want to win the cup this year. Benn is currently up to 15 goals and Seguin is at nine goals this season. they are both getting paid upwards of 9.5 million dollars this season according to CapFriendly. The Stars cannot have Jason Robertson, Roope Hintz, and Joe Pavelski carry the Stars nightly as Luka Doncic does nightly for the Dallas Mavericks.
I don’t know if you have noticed this in some of the recent Stars games, maybe it’s just me. It seems like when Benn decides to take the night off, the rest of the team does as well. What I mean by that is when he can’t get anything going into the net, the rest of the team follows his lead and doesn’t score. I need to see better leadership from Seguin and Benn in the second half of the season.
Dallas Stars Abysmal Game: DeBoer postgame comments
Another thing that didn’t sit right with me after the game was Pete DeBoer’s comments after the loss to the Ducks. Don’t get me wrong, DeBoer has been an amazing coach with the Stars this season. I have no concerns about how the way he has coached the team this season at all. I’m just surprised by how calm he was at the postgame interview after losing to the team who could have the number one draft pick in 2023.
I was surprised by how DeBoer praised John Gibson for his performance against the Stars. Gibson had an amazing game but he needed to call the Stars for their offensive performance. Joel Kiviranta couldn’t finish a wide-open goal that he had Gibson beat on. Gibson basically had a cup of tea on his end of the ice with how little offense Dallas gave him on Wednesday. He looked like a Vezina Trophy finalist for heaven’s sake.
The last thing I’ve been surprised that reporters haven’t asked DeBoer how “up and down” Benn and Seguin have been this season. We need both of these players to be constantly scoring if we want to see Dallas hoist the Stanley Cup this season. We can’t have them scoring right before the playoffs and then disappear during the postseason. It needs to be asked during the second half of the season.
Dallas Stars Abysmal Game: Conclusion
To wrap up this article I just want to say that I have no overall complaints about the Stars midway through the season. We are at the top of the Central Division and currently one of the top Western Conference teams. DeBoer made a couple of tweaks this offseason and the Star’s offense is back to scoring goals.
The only thing that should concern fans is the lack of effort the Stars put forward against the Ducks on Wednesday. That type of effort needs to go away very quickly. It can spread across the locker room to other players. It can also cause the Stars to lose first place in the Central Division and possibly drop out of the playoffs. I’ve seen firsthand what this team is capable of doing to teams on any given night and I didn’t see any of it against the Ducks.