Dallas Stars 4 - Nashville Predators 1
For this day at least, the Stars focused on the hockey game and didn't get too caught up in the sideshow that the Nashville Predators provided. The Preds came out in this game looking for a fight, specifically Mark Fistric, as retaliation for a hit that Shea Weber took at the end of the last game that these two teams played. The Stars got that out of the way early as Fistric took on Jordin Tootoo (who wouldn't even have the decency to take off his helmet, little bastard) and immediately got into more important things.
Mike Ribeiro had one of his best games of the season: Scoring two goals, taking a puck to the mouth, lost a few teeth and then doing the tough guy thing and coming right back into the game. Glen Gulutzan made a shift before the game started, switching Steve Ott and Loui Eriksson to try and get Ribeiro and Brenden Morrow back on track (Eriksson had assists on both of Ribeiro's goals). For one game at least, that move worked out perfectly as Ribs was dishing and dekeing like he hasn't done in a long time.
Kari Lehtonen looked good again after a hiccup game against the Red Wings. He made some solid point blank stops early in the game and frustrated the Preds for much of the night. The only puck that got by him was really no fault of his own. Adam Pardy and Fistric got lost in defensive coverage and Tootoo found a wide open Gabriel Bourque right in front of the net for his first career goal. Pardy has been pretty bad all season but it seems lately like he's been doing everything he could possibly do to play himself out of the lineup. When Souray comes back, I'd like to see Pardy out of the rotation and behind Jordie Benn and Philip Larsen.
The game got pretty chippy in the third period and showed what kind of rivalry this game could be now that these two will be in the same conference next year.
With the win, the Stars moved to 22-16-1, 45 pts. That still puts them at only 9th place in the West and 3 points behind San Jose for the division lead. Their next game is Saturday against the Edmonton Oilers in an early 1 PM start.
- In the Adam Pardy or Jordie Benn debate, Pardy had more minutes in this game even though he had a mistake on the Preds goal. Pardy had 11:16 of ice time while Benn had 8:05.
- In our Pardy mistake watch, besides the goal mess up, he also completely missed the puck when attempting to touch up for an icing call and checked his own player (can't remember who, it might've been Robidas) on a penalty-kill while he was returning to the bench.
- The Dallas PK has been excellent recently, killing 8 of 8 in the last 4 games.
- They aren't getting much pub around the league but Eriksson and Jamie Benn have been on a absolute tear for the past month. In the last ten games, Eriksson has 4 goals and 9 assists while Benn has 4 goals and 11 assists. Benn has been getting double-shifted with the fourth line in order to get him some more ice time.
- In this game, Loui led all forwards with 24:07 (his highest of the season) of ice time while Benn was second with 20:15, his second highest of the season in a non-overtime game (his highest was the previous game against the Wings).
- Adam Burish has been dropped deep into the lineup but he produced tonight with a tip-in goal. He had 8:34 of ice time. Only Jordie Benn had less.
- Ribeiro took a Trevor Daley slapshot right in his mouth during the second period and had to be rushed off the ice. He ended up losing a few teeth (joining Vernon Fiddler and Tomas Vincour) but came back on the ice in the third period wearing a full cage. Tom Wandell took over his center duties while Ribs was out and did a pretty good job. He had a nifty move to skate by a couple of defenders and found a wide-open Brenden Morrow on the right-wing for a one-timer that Rinne was able to save.
Game Stats and Scoring Summary:
|Power Plays||0 of 4
||0 of 3
- 4:18 - Mike Ribeiro (7) Dallas 1 - Nashville 0
Assists: Loui Eriksson, Brenden Morrow
- 8:31 - Gabriel Bourque (1) Dallas 1 - Nashville 1
Assists: Jordin Tootoo, Nick Spaling
- 19:21 - Mike Ribeiro (8) Dallas 2 - Nashville 1
Assists: Nicklas Grossman, Loui Eriksson
- 6:28 - Jamie Benn (11) Dallas 3 - Nashville 1
- 12:53 - Adam Burish (4) Dallas 4 - Nashville 1
Assists: Tom Wandell, Jamie Benn