Dallas Stars Weekly Recap: Hitting Rock Bottom

Stars two-goalie system=13 games both goaltenders have been used in the same game. Most in the NHL.
Stars two-goalie system=13 games both goaltenders have been used in the same game. Most in the NHL.
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By Stephen Elliott

The Dallas Stars reverted back to the things that have doomed their 2016-17 campaign this week.

Three straight games were plagued by poor special teams, inept defense and inconsistent goaltending. All leading to three consecutive losses.

The Stars first took on the Ottawa Senators at home on Wednesday before a week-long road trip. Ottawa scored three goals in a period and a half resulting in Lindy Ruff making a goaltender change (Antti Niemi replaced by Kari Lehtonen). The three goals would be enough, but the Senators tacked on two more as the Senators took it to the Stars, 5-2.

Onto the West coast road trip where the Stars began play in San Jose Sunday against the Sharks. The outcome was just about identical. The Sharks opened the scoring as Patrick Marleau was left open in front of the net. But the Stars countered with the first NHL goal for Remi Elie. Unfortunately, the 21-year-old’s score would be the lone bright spot in the game as the Sharks scored the next four goals, thrashing the Stars 5-1.

The onslaught carried over to Tuesday night against the Edmonton Oilers. In the Stars worst game of the season, they allowed seven goals, changed goaltenders for the third straight game and looked discombobulated on defense. Brett Ritchie snagged the one Stars goal in the 7-1 loss.

The loss set new lows for the Stars. They have now used two goalies in 13 games, most in the league. The two goalies have led to the worst save percentage and most goals allowed (227) in league.

Hitting rock bottom was supposed to be the game against the Sharks. The 5-1 loss created an on-ice meeting with the promise of finishing the season strong. But just a game a later and nothing changed. The Stars are now 27-32-10 with 64 points through 69 games. The best team in the Western Conference from just a season ago is 13 points back from a playoff spot with 13 games to play.

In contrast to a season ago, this could go down as one of the worst seasons in the franchise’s history.

West coast road trip continues as the next two are on the road before coming back to the AAC to host the Sharks.

Upcoming Schedule – All Times Central
3/16 at Canucks 9:00 p.m.
3/17 at Flames   8:00 p.m.
3/20 vs Sharks   7:30 p.m.