There’s not much sense spinning an overtime loss to the Vancouver Canucks or the Dallas Stars’ 6-6-4 record.
For a team with Stanley Cup aspirations, that’s just not good enough.
Still, for all we know, stumbling like this – but not giving up – might just serve the Stars well in the future. Even if it’s tough to stomach moments like Sunday’s 5-4 overtime loss to the lowly Canucks.
(This is just the Canucks second win since Oct. 22, a 2-9-1 stretch.)
If nothing else, the Stars are carving out points here rather than imploding altogether. After going 0-2-1 in a previous three-game road trip, they showed some mettle this time around:
Nov. 6: 4-3 overtime loss to Blackhawks in a back-to-back set against Chicago
Nov. 8: 8-2 loss to Winnipeg
Nov. 10: 4-2 win at Calgary
Nov. 11: 3-2 win at Edmonton
Nov. 13: 5-4 OT loss to Vancouver
Look, that isn’t pretty. It doesn’t exactly scream “juggernaut team.” And, yes, their goaltending remains a jarring disaster.
Navigating an uneven road
Frankly, the Stars might just be headed down a path of uneven play, at least to finish 2016.
Beginning on Tuesday, they’ll play five of six at home, but that’s followed by a stretch of five of six games on the road. Things continue in those two extreme directions, home vs. road wise, through December.
Maybe they’ll transcend their schedule and go on a tear. Maybe the Stars will see more tough times in the near future.
Beyond hardcore fans, they’re unlikely to get much credit for keeping their head above water, but the playoffs present hard lessons and harsh challenges as well. For all we know, these rough times may just serve Dallas well.
You know, or they’re just mediocre.