Dallas Stars Lose an Opportunity to Gain Vital Game Points

Jan 21, 2017; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Stars head coach Lindy Ruff and the Stars wait for the referees to review the goal by Washington Capitals center Jay Beagle (not pictured) during the overtime period at the American Airlines Center. Beagle's goal is good and the Capitals defeat the Stars 4-3 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Stars’ loss last night to the Winnipeg Jets decelerated the momentum that they had been building towards their playoff goal.

This loss came as a disappointment to both the team and fans. Considering the previous season’s success, the Dallas Stars’ current injury-ridden season falls short of predictions.

Going into the Game

Dallas (21-21-10) went into Thursday’s game against the Winnipeg Jets (25-25-4) with high hopes and big goals of adding a third tally to their two-game winning streak.

The Jets, however, came into Thursday with a similar goal and were able to take away a 4-3 victory, adding a third game to a streak of their own.

DAL 42 3-42 1/2 56% 3 2
WPG 29 4-29 1/2 44% 4 2

“Every game from here on out, you’ve got to hold yourself to a higher standard,” Stars’ forward Devin Shore said before Thursday’s contest, “and we’ve got to make sure that the compete is there every shift.”

Going into the game, both teams sat beside each other in the league standings with 52 points, just shy of a wild-card playoff spot. At this point in the season for the Stars, every game counts, and unfortunately, so does every loss.

“At the end of the night we had our chances.  We had plenty of good chances to make a difference.  It seems like a common theme but I like the work that went into it,” said Stars’ coach Lindy Ruff.

The Stars find themselves having to accommodate for yet another injury, but with 30 games left to go in the season, it’s important for them to keep their chins up.

Putting Points on the Board

The Stars and the Jets played an emotional and determined game, but the Stars’ were unable to equal the Jets’ lead.

Scoring goals for Winnipeg were Bryan Little, Nikolaj Ehlers and Mark Scheifele, whose opportunity for a hat trick was ended when a challenged goal was ruled offsides.

Dallas saw goals from Jamie Benn, Patrick Eaves and John Klingberg. Klingberg scored the only PP goal of the night for the Stars.

A Near Hat Trick for Scheifele

Mark Scheifele recorded two official goals tonight, and would have seen three if it weren’t for a challenge by the Stars’ which ruled, luckily for them, in their favor. Scheifele currently ranks fourth in the standings with 25 goals in the 2016-2017 season.

He scored the only PPG goal of the night for the Jets, a category where he proves himself dangerous with a 1.04 P/GP earning him sixth place overall.

The Stars’ turned their focus was on the game in front of them, as a team should.

Unfortunately, Scheifele managed to capitalize on those times, which allowed him to find the unguarded sweet spots he needed to make a clean shot.

Jason Spezza Decked at the Blue Line

Jason Spezza endured a huge hit from Adam Lowry during the third period. The play itself did not stop, but Spezza came off of the ice and headed straight for the tunnel.

He did not return for the remainder of the game. Adam Cracknell replaced him on his line with Tyler Seguin and Antoine Roussel.

Lindy Ruff said later that he “[doesn’t] really have an update.  He’s going to miss some time.  It’s probably more than days but until I can find out more.”

We can only hope for the best with this one.

The Captain

Captain Jamie Benn played a notable performance against the Jets. Benn skated up and down the ice looking for ways to best serve his team.

His drive to get the puck into the Jets’ defensive zone was effective, for the most part.

This is excluding Winnipeg’s 5-on-3 during the second period. A misplaced Benn exposed Jets’ forward Mark Scheifele, which allowed enough time for Scheifele to pull Winnipeg into a 3-2 lead.

“I know that I need to have a better effort out there in trying to lead these guys,” Benn said. “I think that was a step in the right direction.”

Despite what looked a bit like a disheveled rush to grab loose pucks, the Stars’ defense stepped up their skating stamina. What the Stars plan to do about addressing the turnovers and unguarded opposing forwards, well, only time will tell.

Moving Forward

Overall, it was a game to remember for the Stars. After the success of their previous season, it’s losses like these that really challenge the team to find the drive within themselves to finish out the season strong.

Going into their next game with a positive mindset will be a large factor in game performance.

Nothing’s over just yet.

The Stars will finish out their six-game homestand on Saturday against the Chicago Blackhawks (31-17-5). Dallas is 0-2-1 in vs Chicago this season.

**All quotes used come from Stars Inside Edge. **

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