- Mark Stepneski, ESPNDallas.com
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FRISCO -- Things are trending Tomas Vincour’s way these days. The young Dallas Stars forward is playing well and, most important, the team is winning.
“Team first for me. When the team is doing great it’s always a great feeling,” Vincour said. “I am part of a winning team. It’s a huge thing for me and every day is so much fun. Every day is a challenge for me to get better and help the team keep rolling.”
And Vincour has made a contribution to the Stars’ current 9-0-1 run that has propelled them to the top of the Pacific Division and the third seed in the Western Conference. He’s been logging solid minutes on the team’s fourth line, and he’s chipped in offensively.
He scored a late game-tying goal and then the shootout winner in a victory over San Jose on Thursday and scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal in a 3-1 victory over Edmonton on March 2.
“He’s been real good,” Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. “Strong along the walls, using his size and strength. You can see him holding off some bigger defensemen at this level. I think he is playing with some confidence and poise. Those young guys are going to be big for us to give us energy throughout this last push, these last 13 games.”
It’s been an up and down season for Vincour, who has eight points (4 goals, 4 assists) in 37 games with Dallas. He started the season in the NHL but has been sent to the AHL a couple times, and he missed 14 games with a knee injury. He was in the AHL when the Stars came out of the All-Star break, but after captain Brenden Morrow went out with an injury Vincour was called back up and has been in the lineup for 19 straight games.
“The more you play you’re confidence gets higher,” Vincour said. “All the guys are great. They try to help you on the ice and off the ice, too. That’s really huge for me as a young guy.”
Sometimes you forget how young Vincour is. He’s just 21-years-old. And just two years out of junior hockey with just 61 NHL games under his belt.
This season he’s had a mentor in fellow Czech Radek Dvorak, a proven NHL veteran who has been a solid role model for Vincour.
“That’s been huge. Devo is like my dad,” Vincour said. “He’s a great leader, he’s been around the league for a long time. You can see his work ethic off the ice. He’s the first guy in the room and he’s working out before everyone gets here. That’s what you have to take from him, the experience and the work ethic. And you’ve got to push yourself.”
And pushing himself is what Vincour has been doing and it’s paying dividends.
“He’s got a good, long career in the NHL ahead of him,” said Gulutzan. “He works real hard. He had a great summer putting in work conditioning-wise, getting himself ready to play. In his own words, ‘getting serious about the game.’ Credit to him, he’s working his way into our lineup.”
Notes: Souray doubtful for Tuesday
*Defenseman Sheldon Souray practiced Monday, but is doubtful for Tuesday’s game against Minnesota.
*RW Radek Dvorak didn’t practice Monday. He is questionable for Tuesday with an ankle injury.
*LW Jake Dowell missed Monday’s practice due to illness.
*The Stars recalled defenseman Jordie Benn from the Texas Stars of the AHL on Monday.
24dFrom the NHLPA