Dallas 3 - Chicago 1
For one day at least, the Stars can say they were sitting in a playoff spot. Dallas made a fantastic comeback (a very rare one) in the third period last night to beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-1. Coupled with the Phoenix Coyotes win over the Calgary Flames, the Stars wake up this morning sitting in the eighth spot in the West.
A combination of a physical game and Richard Bachman playing like Kari Lehtonen proved fruitful for the Stars.
Dallas started the game with a purpose. They played with more urgency than the Hawks and were flying to the puck. Dallas didn't put much pressure on the net in the first period but they were the much more physical team on the night. Dallas outhit the Hawks by an enormous 41-15 margin. Out of the 18 guys who suited up (aside from Kari) all but Trevor Daley, Radek Dvorak and Loui Eriksson recorded a hit. They limited the Hawks chances in the first while providing a tone that would last the rest of the game.
The intimidating start didn't turn into much for Dallas though and it came back to hurt them in the second period. Marion Hossa took over the game in the second, scoring a goal and providing the Hawks with numerous chances to improve on their lead. The Hawks ended up with 16 shots on net in the second period as they tried to take the game by the throat, but Bachman proved to be more than up to the task.
Bachman single-handedly kept the Stars in the game. The only shot that got past him was off a wild mess in front of the net. There were at least five or six bodies on the ice in front of him and the puck ended up on the stick of Hossa, who had a near point blank shot that found the back of the net. That would be the only blemish on Bachman's record though. The fault was not his though as the play started off a Mark Fistric turnover.
Corey Crawford had managed to stop everything thrown at him so far (not that it was much. Dallas only had 10 SOG through two periods), but he proved to be vulnerable in the third. Dallas came out with energy again and took over the game. They peltered Crawford with 15 shots (3 of which found the net) and continued to pound Hawks players on the glass. Steve Ott, Michael Ryder and Loui Eriksson all scored tip-in goals (it's amazing what happens when you put players near the net).
The third period comeback is rare for Dallas. It's only the third time this season in which they've come back in the third period to win the game. The fact that they did that last night was one part joyous, one part shocking and one part confusing (as in you couldn't believe what was happening). In fact, seeing the comeback was so great, it gave me Ron Swanson giggles.
Dallas has no time to celebrate the win though. They have to come back today and play against the Minnesota Wild, who are coming off their own game last night.
more after the jump
- He had limited time again, but Ryan Garbutt continues to impress. He had a TOI of 12:20 and once again led the team in hits (this time with five). He also would have led the team in shots on goal if he had a little more accuracy. He only had one on net, but had four additional shots that went wide. He's one of the few guys that rushes the net and found himself in prime position multiple times yesterday.
- The was some mid-game line shuffling yesterday and one in particular showed a lot of promise. The line of Ott-Garbutt-Vincour was a menace for the Hawks. That line provided a ton of pressure on Chicago and helped to set the tone for that third period.
- Sheldon Souray made his return to the lineup and played 20:39. He had one shot on goal, two hits and one blocked shot. He played pretty well in his first game back.
- Dallas is struggling to get calls. They had no power-plays in this game and have received only two in the past three games.
- If it wasn't for Kari Lehtonen and Jamie Benn, Michael Ryder would be the MVP of this team. He had a goal and an assist in this game and has recorded a point in eight of his last ten games. He leads the team in goals (24) and is fourth in assists (20).
- Bachman showed the staying power that he has in this league with his performance last night. He made big saves, provided no rebounds and made one of those ohmygod moments with a diving glove save.
Game Stats and Scoring Summary:
|Power Plays||0 of 0
||0 of 1
1st Period: No goals
- 9:32 - Marian Hossa (24)
Assists: Jamal Mayers, Michael Frolik
- 9:25 - Steve Ott (10)
Assist: Trevor Daley
- 14:58 - Michael Ryder (24)
Assist: Mike Ribeiro
- 16:12 - Loui Eriksson (19)
Assists: Michael Ryder, Mike Ribeiro