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Archive for the ‘Shootouts’ Category

Dallas 4, Washington 2 (SO)

No, it’s not a turning point. Don’t even start with that stuff.

It was fun, though. It was an extremely impressive game by Marty Turco. While I was watching it, I kept thinking how great he seemed to be playing, yet we were down by two goals. Then at the end of the second period the broadcasters pointed out that the Capitals already had fired 42 shots at him.

That’s an unusually high number of shots for a whole game. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that many after two periods.

But when the third period rolled around, the Stars were still in it. They poured on the pressure and tied it up, with power play goals by Brad Richards and Trevor Daley and then James Neal scored to take the lead.

Unfortunately, Ovechkin scored to tie it up again.

Unbelievably, (or as Pierre McGuire says, unbleebly) the Stars managed to hold it together through the overtime and score a couple of shootout goals to beat the Caps. That was a very fancy zip-around from Loui Eriksson to score the shootout winner.

It was a fun and exciting game and it showed that the Stars can play and that Turco can tend goal. They allowed a ton of shots but they didn’t give up, probably because their goaltender was actually helping them instead of hindering them.

This game is not a turning point, though. There have been too many games this season where the Stars beat a team they’re not supposed to and everybody says, “See? They can still do it! We just have to keep it going!”

The problem is that they can’t keep it going. They have yet to show that they can keep anything going. There are only 17 games left in the season and they have yet to win three in a row. I can probably count on one hand the number of times they’ve won two in a row. They’re not going to leapfrog all the teams near them in the standings to get into the 8th spot.

Still, it was a great game. I enjoyed it. I hope to enjoy the next game they play. But that’s as far ahead as I’m going to plan.

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Dallas 2, Edmonton 3 (SO)

I was listening to the postgame show on The Ticket and Bob and Dan were saying the same thing I was thinking. Everybody wants to say that the defense is too young and inexperienced, but the problems aren’t always on defense. The defense had a good game. Turco had a great game.

The forwards need to score some goals. This is a group that is built to be high-scoring, yet they’re stuck at 2 goals a game most nights. That puts pressure on the defense, whether they’re young or not.

The other thing that is really getting tiresome is the way they let teams get back in the game. They were up on the Oilers 2-0 most of the way through the 2nd period. They were still up 2-1 with just over three minutes left in the whole game, and let the Oilers score the tying goal.

I doubt there were many in the crowd that thought they’d get it back in the overtime or the shootout. Especially the shootout, of course.

I was at this game (I feel like I’ve been going to all the home games lately), and from my un-Ralphie-aided position, I thought the Stars looked good most of the game. The defense actually did pretty well, I thought.

Mark Fistric had a great game back on the blue line. He made a lot of hits and some fancy stick-checks and generally was on the ball the whole game. He had 8 hits and 5 blocked shots.

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It’s more like that stretch of I-635 between I-35E and the airport. Just kind of wavy.

After that nice win against Vancouver, we lost to the Minnesota Wild after giving up two goals to them in the first, the battling back, only to give up a third. Then Minnesota hung on to win.

Then we went to meet up with the league-leading San Jose Sharks and tried to do the same thing. It was only slightly different, in that we waited until the second period to give up 2 goals, and the third period to fight back to a tie. If we’re going to insist on doing it that way, I think the Sharks game version is better. It gives the opposition less time to go ahead again.

This time, though, we did the impossible and won in the shootout. Marty Turco was brilliant in the shootout, like he used to be in the old days. Crawford kept his promise and picked some new guys for the shootout this time. He kept James Neal, who hit the post for the third time this season. He needs to adjust the sight on his stick, I think.

The genius move, though, was calling on Stéphane Robidas. Robi skated in and just straight-on roofed it. No dekes for him. That won the game for us and got a huge cheer from me.

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It’s been a trying season, but this was a nice win. The Stars had a really good game to close out the home schedule, too, in front of a sold-out arena and ending with a really nice ovation.

These games mean nothing, but it doesn’t mean you can’t still have a little fun.

One more to go. It would be really nice to be able to knock the Ducks out of the playoffs ourselves, but I’m not going to fret too much when that doesn’t happen.

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Built by cotton in 1872

Dallas 2, Edmonton 5

This one didn’t seem that bad when I was watching it. It didn’t seem like all the other games where we gave up five goals. It was 3-2 right up until the last couple of minutes. A huge weight has been lifted off my hockey shoulders, so that game was just fine with me. So we lost. We’re doing a lot better. Hopes are up.

Dallas 2, Colorado 1, SO

I was out of town for a long weekend so I didn’t watch Friday’s game against the Avs until Monday. I TiVo-ed it and managed (not surprisingly) to avoid any hockey talk the whole weekend. I was helping my parents (in Central Texas) give tours of their renovated 1872 Farmhouse Victorian, which was on their town’s Christmas Tour of Homes. Fortunately, none of the visitors blurted out the Stars score.

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Dallas 1, Anaheim 2 (SO)

The fact that we consistently lose shootouts this season is not endearing it to me one little bit. I already hated the shootout and now I hate it more.

I thought they did pretty well, considering. A 1-1 tie at the end of overtime is pretty good for this bunch. Eriksson, again, looked great. He got the one goal, but he also stole a ton of pucks.

Loui Eriksson saw that Trevor Daley was going to get away and into the zone with speed, so he stayed up with him and went straight to the net so that Daley could get him the puck. For his troubles, he earned a goal.

Sean Avery could take a lesson from him. In the first period, Mike Ribeiro went in on a breakaway and instead of keeping up with him and going to the net, Avery stood up when he hit the blue line and just coasted in, watching Ribs being forced to shoot because he didn’t have anybody to pass to. It was very similar to the icing coast. I was yelling at the TV, “Keep moving! Keep going! Why are you stopping?!!” GAH!

As Razor pointed out several times, Daley had a really good game, too. He had a lot of chances and played very well on the defensive side, to go along with his assist on the only goal.

I’m taking it one game at a time right now. This one wasn’t that bad.

Update: I almost forgot! Big thanks to Jeff K who runs the music at the AAC! Tonight, he played Raffi’s Banana Phone Song during a goal review and it was adorable! Thanks to Amy at Shots Off the Crossbar for suggesting that I suggest it to Jeff K. I bet you didn’t think he’d do it, did you, Amy? Neither did I!

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The fan voting has started for the 2009 NHL All-Star game. As usual, there’s all kinds of hand-wringing about who deserves to be voted in and who doesn’t.

It gives me tired-head (to use a Ticket-coined phrase). Every single year, half the fans are mad about some player getting in that they didn’t think deserved it, and the other half of the fans are upset about some other player getting in that they didn’t think deserved it.

It’s the appetizer that precedes the main course of half the fans griping because the All-Star Game doesn’t have any defense, and the other half griping that we get enough defense in the regular season, why do we have to have it in the All-Star Game? Then the dessert of all the fans bashing the skills competition or the broadcast or the channel that broadcast is on.

Wysh, over at Puck Daddy, is already all in a twist because Marty Turco is second in fan voting for goalies right now. First of all, fan voting is often based on what players did since the last All-Star Game. Turco’s been great up until this little stretch. Second, there’s probably a bunch of fans voting for him just to prove that fan voting is no good, like they did last year with poor Rory Fitzpatrick. Third, who cares? Every team will have at least one player, and every single player that makes it will have whining detractors that think their guy should have made it instead.

Besides, Marty Turco was the highlight of the 2007 ASG when he was mic’ed up in the net and talking live to Doc Emrick and Eddie Olczyk while making saves. Why wouldn’t we want that?

I haven’t even voted yet, but I’ll probably vote the straight Stars ticket. Sue me. I might even write-in Philippe Boucher.

The point of bringing all that up, though, was not that rant about the All-Star Game. That just happened accidentally.

The new idea I have is to use a similar voting system and let the fans vote on the shootout. Then require the NHL will to honor the vote. If the fans vote to get rid of it, then the NHL should get. Rid. Of it.

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