Dallas 3 - St. Louis 2
The Stars (3-1-0) had to sweat out the last 15 minutes of the game against the Blues (1-2-0) to beat them 3-2. Dallas got off to a quick start, scoring shorthanded in the first period and then two goals in the second before St. Louis started to mount their comeback.
Kari Lehtonen had to be on top of his game again as the Blues fired 38 shots at him. If he keeps playing like this, he'll deserve a giant bonus for himself at the end of the season. He allowed to goals by him, but he made huge stops at critical moments during the game. He made a huge stop with 3 minutes left in the game off a wicked shot from Alex Pietrangelo and was a brick wall in the last two minutes when Loui Eriksson took a tripping penalty, putting Dallas at a 6-on-4 disadvatage when St. Louis pulled their goalie.
Dallas started this game with much more energy than their previous one against the Coyotes. They played great for two periods before going into defensive mode in the third. Puck possession was lost too often and Lehtonen had to do way too much to keep this game ahead. They seemed to let up after getting that 3-0 lead and it nearly came back to haunt them.
Eriksson scored the first goal in the game with two minutes left in the first period. The Blues were on a power-play after Nick Grossman took a holding penalty. The puck was shot into the Stars zone where Steve Ott was the first to get to the puck. He fired it off the boards and out of the zone where it landed right in the path of Eriksson, who then had a breakaway. Eriksson deked Jaroslav Halak and sent a backhand shot through the five-hole for Dallas' first goal.
The Stars second goal came off seven minutes into the second period off great play from Trevor Daley. Daley had possession of the puck in the Stars zone and skated the length of the ice all the way to the middle of the Blues' zone. Four Blues defenders converged on him and Daley neatly passed the puck off to the left face-off circle, where Adam Burish one-timed a shot right by Halak.
Dallas would score again in that period off a power play goal (surprise surprise). Ribeiro had the puck on the right side of the ice, near the blue line and shot towarsd the net. The puck deflected off Stephane Robidas' stick and dribbled towards the front of the net where it dropped onto Brenden Morrow's stick. One quick wrist flick and Morrow had the Stars' third goal of the game.
It was 20 seconds later that St. Louis would begin their ill-fated comeback. Matt D'Agostini scored off a scrum right in front of the net as Kari Lehtonen lost a rebound off a shot from Alexander Steen. D'Agostini had an open net to shoot at and he didn't miss.
St. Louis made things a little less comfortable for Dallas in the third period when a blue-line shot from Chris Stewart managed to find his way past Lehtonen. Kari was money after that point though, so Dallas was able to escape with the win.
Notes and Observations:
- Glen Gulutzan preached toughness, two-way play and sacrificing yourself for the team. Dallas continues to take that to heart as they have outhit their opponent in every game this season. For all their woes on the offensive side of the ice, they are pesky enough on the defensive side to make up for it. They just need to find a way to keep more possession of the puck and learn how to play with the lead.
- The penalty-kill unit continues to impress. They were 100% again in this game and even managed to score a shorthanded goal. The power-play, despite still looking bad, was able to score a goal from Morrow.
- The Morrow-Ribeiro-Ryder line finally got their first points of the season in this game. They need to get points if Dallas hopes to succeed for the rest of the season.
- Lehtonen continues to face a huge number of shots. He's played in three games this year and has seen at least 38 pucks fired his way in each one.
- Nick Grossman finally made his season debut and had a pretty good game. He had a crucial blocked shot in the first period after Kari was out of position and the net was left open. Grossman dove in front of a shot and prevented the Blues from scoring a goal. He had four shots blocked overall and had four hits in the game. He had 16:12 minutes of ice time.
- Dallas (and Kari Lehtonen) has now won the last five games played against the Blues.
- There was another small crowd in attendence during the game. The announced crowd was 7,949. Another small crowd, possibly the smallest yet, can be expected for Saturday's game as it goes directly against the Texas Rangers playoff game.
Game Stats and Scoresheet:
|Power Plays||1 of 5
||0 of 5
- 18:50 Loui Eriksson (2) (Shorthanded) Dallas 1 - St. Louis 0
Assist: Steve Ott
- 7:06 Adam Burish (1) Dallas 2 - St. Louis 0
Assist: Trevor Daley
- 14:21 Brenden Morrow (1) (Power Play) Dallas 3 - St. Louis 0
Assists: Stephane Robidas, Mike Ribeiro
- 14:41 Matt D'Agostini (1) Dallas 3 - St. Louis 1
Assists: Alexander Steen, Kent Huskins
- 3:58 Chris Stewart (2) Dallas 3 - St. Louis 2
Assists: Kevin Shattenkirk, Patrik Berglund