I took a weekend road trip, so I watched the road game against the Avalanche on TiVo delay, right before I watched the home game against the Avs. I just have a couple of things to say about the loss in Denver:
Cheapshot against Brenden Morrow.
Cheapshot against Matt Niskanen.
Cheapshot against Mike Modano.
Stéphane Robidas made a perfectly normal, and not even very big, hit on dumb ol’ Peter Forsberg and Laperriere tried to fight him. Apparently every hit is worth picking a fight over. Except when they slew-foot Matt Niskanen after the whistle. I guess that’s okay.
I was mad and all, but the Stars made it up to me with the second game of the night (for me). Everybody was on. The defense was excellent, even with Niskanen back on the shelf tonight. They smothered the Avalanche all night.
The first period was especially tight, defensively. At the end of the period we could hear Bill Ollerman, the AAC announcer, announce the shot counts to a huge ovation. “Shots in the first period… Avalanche, Zzzzzeeeeero! Your Dallas Stars, twelve!” When we came back for the second period the arena officials felt sorry for the Avs and gave them one shot.
Brad Richards got his first goal as a Star, which is good. I guess he’ll be okay. I’m really liking him more and more as he gets used to his new team. I have every confidence that he’ll be a big help. Robi got another goal, too. He’s set a career high in goals, to join several other Stars who have done the same thing. Stu Barnes got the other goal. Modano had another good stickwork game, with lots of steals and perfectly-timed stick-lifts.
I haven’t really caught up in the news about the first game, but apparently the porcelain Forsberg was injured in Saturday’s game so he was out again. I’m pretty sure he played that whole game, but I guess he stiffened up overnight.
By the way, Niklas Hagman was wearing a visor for some reason. Razor started to tell why, I think, but he went off on a tangent about the fact that it’s tinted and never said why he was wearing it. I’ll have to go find out why.
We moved back in front of the Pacific Division race by one point. I can’t believe the Sharks are on a 9-game winning streak! I hope they’re wearing themselves out. And I hate the Ducks.
Now we’ll just have to sit for three days and watch other teams catch up in games before we play the Red Wings on Thursday. It’s going to be a tense stretch. We still have two games left against the Ducks and two against the Sharks. There’s a lot of ground to be gained or lost in those four games.