Friday, December 17, 2010
Stars-Sharks thoughts & observations
By Mark Stepneski
Some thoughts and observations following the Stars 4-3 overtime loss to the San Jose Sharks at American Airlines Center Thursday night.
- Points are important and the Stars got one out of this one. Considering they were shorthanded the final 49 seconds of regulation, it was probably a good point when you look at it as a whole. Regulation losses are the real killers and the Stars’ penalty kill got the Stars to OT and secured at least the one point.
- Stars coach Marc Crawford:” You never like to give one away, but it definitely is a point that will help us.You look around the league, it seems like the first thing we do is see what the other scores are. A lot of teams in our conference lost tonight, so we pick up a pretty important point on them.”
- Phoenix, Anaheim and Los Angeles all lost in regulation Thursday night, so it was a valuable point. The Stars have points in 10 of their last 12 games (8-2-2).
- The Stars and Sharks have played three games this season and all of them have gone beyond regulation. The Stars are 2-0-1 in the three games for a total of 5 points and the Sharks are 1-0-2 for a total of 4 points.
- The Sharks outshot the Stars 43-18 in the game, including a 26-14 shots advantage in five-on-five play. San Jose had 17 shots on the power play. The Stars had two on the power and scored on both of them. Dallas had two shorthanded shots as well.
- The special teams were very good on this night. If you had told me that the Stars’ power play would go 2-2 and their PK would be 6-7 and kill off a 1:39 five-on-three, I would have put a few bucks on them winning the game. But it didn’t go that way on this night. The Stars lost the five-on-five game, getting outscored 3-1. And San Jose’s one power play goal came at the right time – overtime.
- Kari Lehtonen had a pretty good game. He was great early, especially on that San Jose five-on-three in the first period and he was outstanding in the third period. I think he might like to have a couple goals back, but it was a pretty good performance and he seemed to settle in and shake off the rust as the game moved along. He made 39 saves and helped the Stars get a point in this game.
- Brenden Morrow had a big game, picking up a goal and registering a game-high 11 hits on the night. Not bad for a guy who had his nose broken by a puck Monday in San Jose, finished out that game and had surgery on it Wednesday. “He just continues to impress with his character and his leadership,” said Stars coach Marc Crawford. “That’s leadership in a nutshell right there.”
- Give the Sharks some credit for a good effort. They suffered a disappointing loss in Nashville Wednesday, giving up two late goals in a 3-2 loss, and bounced back with a pretty good effort against the Stars. Getting Kent Huskins back on the blue line helped and having Devin Setoguchi back in their lineup is a big plus as well.