For the fourth time in their past five games, the Stars found the win column. But this one was arguably their most convincing of the season.
The Stars delivered their finest defensive effort of the season, which in turn led to offense. They held Connor McDavid off the scoresheet, snapping his 17-game point streak to start the season, and limited Leon Draisaitl to just one assist. The Oilers, who entered the game with the second-most goals in the NHL, were limited to only 22 shots.
All four lines, six defensemen and goaltender were on the same page Tuesday, and it was an encouraging sign for a club that appears to be rounding the corner. They’ve won four in a row at home and have outscored the opposition 18-6 over that span.
Here are the five takeaways of the game.
No doubt the most impressive victory for the Stars of the 2021-22 campaign. They’ve done a much better job putting together 60-minute efforts as of late and Tuesday was no exception.
They were ready from the drop of the puck and carried the play in all three periods. The Stars scored twice in the first period to set the tone, once in the second period to make it 3-0 and again in the third to restore a three-goal lead at 4-1.
Not only that, but the work they put in defensively was also their best of the season. Miro Heiskanen‘s 1-on-1 with McDavid was must-watch hockey. Even with McDavid at full speed in the neutral zone, Heiskanen’s gap control was excellent, and his use of the stick separated McDavid from the puck at the top of the circles.
NO ONE HOTTER THAN HINTZ
Seriously, the guy just keeps scoring. He got the Stars on the board midway through the first period on Tuesday with a deft deflection that gave him six goals in his past six games and the team lead in that category.
The “ketchup bottle effect” couldn’t be truer in Roope Hintz‘ case after he somehow went the first 11 games without a goal. Mind boggling.
DEADLY POWER PLAY STRIKES AGAIN
One of the league’s best power plays came through once again, punishing the Oilers twice with the man advantage. Dallas’ first two goals came on the power play, while Denis Gurianov‘s breakaway tally happened just seconds after another one expired.
Their power play stayed red hot with at least one PPG in nine of their past 10 games. Dallas entered Tuesday’s contest with the fourth-best power-play percentage in the NHL at 26.7% (12-for-45).
OETTINGER’S STATUS CONTINUES TO RISE
Though he only faced 22 shots, Jake Oettinger was good when he needed to be. He’s undefeated in three starts with wins against Detroit, St. Louis and Edmonton. To go along with his 3-0 record is a sparkling 1.29 goals-against average and .955 save percentage.
PROOF IS IN THE PUDDING
The Stars earned 5-2 victories over the Philadelphia Flyers and Detroit Red Wings, but both teams were on the second half of back to backs. They’ve since followed with 4-1 wins over the St. Louis Blues and Edmonton Oilers, both on normal rest for each opponent.
It’s proof the Stars have another gear and level they can reach, and the consistency they’ve shown is perhaps the most important thing.
These have been as close to 60-minute performances as you can get.
Their upcoming set of back-to-backs will be interesting with the red-hot Avalanche on Friday and the Coyotes on Saturday.
Don’t miss your chance to see the Stars close out their homestand this Friday against the Colorado Avalanche at 6:30 p.m. Get your tickets now!
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club.
Kyle Shohara is the Digital Manager for DallasStars.com and writes about the Stars/NHL. Follow him on Twitter @kyleshohara.
Courtesy Kyle Shohara @kyleshohara