Trying to get back into the Western Conference playoff race, the Dallas Stars needed a victory in the worst way.
On Saturday against the Ottawa Senators, the Stars peppered goalie Robin Lehner with rubber – finishing with 44 shots on the day – before finally opening the game up on their way to an important 3-1 victory. It snapped the Stars’ losing streak at four games.
For now, it also gets them back to within two points of the Phoenix Coyotes, currently holding down the second Wild Card spot in the Western Conference. The Coyotes are in action tonight, as they go up against the red-hot Boston Bruins, winners of 11 consecutive games. So, it was critical for the Stars to do their part in trying to make up on ground in the West.
The Stars (with 77 points) now have 12 games remaining in their regular season. After tonight, the Coyotes (currently with 79 points) will have only 11 remaining.
Cue the scoreboard watching, if players haven’t been doing that already.
“Sometimes, you think it’s best not to, but I know it’s there. I’ve done the math, and I know what we have to do,” Stars’ center Vern Fiddler told the Dallas Morning News.
“I think the veterans can handle it, and we have to help the younger players with that. You obviously have to concentrate on each game and each shift, but I don’t think there’s any harm in knowing where you stand.”
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger