By Martin Iheke
Man…. what a rough week for your Dallas Stars. After playing 14 of their first 24 games on the road to start the season and finishing with a respectable record, the Stars figured with the next four games at home they would take advantage. Instead, it is has been nothing but a disadvantage for the Stars going 1-2-1 so far on the home stand and overall have been a mediocre team at home with a 6-6-2 record. Call me crazy, but that is not a recipe for success especially if you want to make the playoffs. The problems might be deeper than that after the drubbing they received at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks, 8-1, last Saturday night.
The Blackhawks looked more comfortable at the American Airlines Center than the Stars did. Maybe having almost half the crowd being Blackhawks fans had something to do with it, but with the way the Blackhawks looked it would not have mattered where they played. The Stars looked like they did not belong on the same ice as them and right now, that looks bad. Head coach Glen Gulutzan was not too pleased with the team not having the ability to get up for a team like the Blackhawks. “Well, if this is not an alarm clock, then I do not know what is,” Gulutzan said. What is even worse is that owner, Tom Gaglardi was at the game with his family and to see that performance had to not have been good. After practice Sunday, he said he was not going to push the panic button.
“I don’t think we gain anything by making dramatic changes right now,” Gaglardi said according to dallasnews.com. “I think it’s important to measure what we’ve got, and I think we need a good period of time to do that. I don’t think there’s anything to gain from doing anything like that or discussing anything like that, and nothing has been discussed like that. Frankly, that’s not on my mind from where I sit,” as he continued. That is a good mindset to have right now. It was one game but when you look at this current home stand where they have gone 1-2-1 and are on the verge of falling out of the playoff picture, time appears to be running out on this squad. The trade deadline is in a couple of weeks so this team will have to make their move right now on whether they are in it to win or not. Stars forward Ray Whitney thinks that type of game can be used to jump start them. “It can be a good thing, where it humbles you really quickly and makes you re-analyze,” he said according to dallasnews.com. “But in the end, it counts as one loss. They can’t give us two losses for it, so it’s a good way to get a reminder of how we have to play and how we have to be successful, and how we need to be better,” as he continued.
“I want us to just play better. I’m not going to be looking at the standings. I want us to just play good hockey,” Gaglardi said according to dallasnews.com. “If we make the playoffs, we make the playoffs, and if we don’t, we don’t. We’ll deal with either scenario. Right now, it’s more about how we’re playing. I heard the term ‘wake-up call’ after the game and maybe that’s part of it, but I think we just need to play a better game,” as he continued. The Stars will try to jump start their play at the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday night and then travel the next night to play at the Los Angeles Kings before returning home on Saturday to play the Avalanche and the Minnesota Wild on Monday.