Dallas Stars: Steven Stamkos

Hart Trophy finalists

April, 27, 2012
Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning are the three finalists for the Hart Trophy, which goes to the NHL's MVP.

Here's the release from the league:
Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, center Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins and center Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning are the three finalists for the 2011-12 Hart Memorial Trophy, awarded " to the player adjudged to be the most valuable to his team," the National Hockey League announced today.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted ballots for the Hart Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Wednesday, June 20, during the 2012 NHL Awards from Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas. The 2012 NHL Awards will be broadcast by NBC Sports Network in the United States and CBC in Canada.

Following are the finalists for the Hart Trophy, in alphabetical order:

Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers

Lundqvist was the anchor of a Rangers club that posted its best regular-season record since the Stanley Cup season of 1993-94 and captured first place in the Eastern Conference. He went 39-18-5 in 62 appearances, setting a career high in wins. He placed near the top in all major goaltending categories: third in wins, tied for third in shutouts (eight), fourth in goals-against average (1.97) and fourth in save percentage (.930). Also voted a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, Lundqvist is the first goaltender to vie for Hart Trophy honors since 2007, when Vancouver's Roberto Luongo and New Jersey's Martin Brodeur were second and third, respectively.

Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins

Malkin captured his second career Art Ross Trophy by leading the NHL with 109 points (50 goals, 59 assists). He registered points in 60 of the 75 games he played in (80%) and became the first player since 1995-96 to record five or more points at least four times in one season. Malkin also finished second in the NHL with a career-high 50 goals and led the League with 339 shots on goal. He is the first scoring champion to win by a double-digit margin since Pittsburgh's Jaromir Jagr finished 20 points ahead of Anaheim’s Teemu Selanne in 1998-99. Malkin is a Hart Finalist for the third time; he finished second to Washington's Alex Ovechkin in 2008 and 2009.

Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning

Stamkos scored a League-leading 60 goals to capture his second Maurice Richard Trophy in the past three seasons. He notched his 60th goal in Tampa Bay's season finale at Winnipeg, becoming the first player to reach the milestone since 2007-08 (Alex Ovechkin, 65); before Ovechkin, the last time a player hit 60 was 1995-96 (Mario Lemieux, 69; Jaromir Jagr, 62). Stamkos tied for the League lead with Phoenix's Radim Vrbata in game-winning goals (12), scored an NHL-record five overtime goals and notched 48 even-strength scores, the most of any player since 1992-93. The 22-year-old is an NHL Trophy finalist for the first time.
Stars forward Jamie Benn had an impressive showing at the NHL All-Star Skills Competition, taking the shooting accuracy competition and putting on another impressive shooting display in the skills challenge relay.

In the first round of the accuracy competition he hit four of six targets in 13.583 seconds to advance to the finals against Philadelphia rookie Matt Read. Benn then hit four of five targets in in 10.204 seconds in the finals to win the competition to top Read, who hit his four targets in 16.361 seconds.

“It’s a lot harder than it looks,” Benn said on NBC Sports Network’s telecast of the All-Star Skills Competition. “Once you get one you can get on a roll and run with it.”

After the competition he said it was a lot of practice shooting pucks as a kid that paid dividends.

“Shooting all the time growing up and practicing in the garage really paid off,” Benn said.

In the skills challenge relay, Benn had the hardest angle one-timer but he hit three of three shots for Team Chara.

“That sharp angle, I was a little nervous about that one, getting them in,” Benn said.

He was eliminated in the first round of the elimination shootout when Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Quick made a pad save on his wrist shot.

The highlight of the night was Boston’s Zdeno Chara breaking his own record in the hardest shot competition. Chara shattered his previous record of 105.9 MPH by hitting 108.8 MPH on Saturday night.

Another highlight was Chicago’s Patrick Kane taking the breakaway challenge by donning a Superman cape, Clark Kent glasses and then scoring a goal while gliding towards the net on his stomach.

Team Alfredsson won the skills competition over Team Chara by a score of 21-12.

For Benn, it was a good experience.

“I think it went really well. It was a lot of fun out there,” he said. “It was pretty cool to see the skill that these guys have and it was great for the first time.”

Here were the winners in Saturday’s night’s All-Star Skills Competition.

Faster skater: Carl Hagelin, NY Rangers
Breakaway challenge: Patrick Kane, Chicago
Accuracy shooting: Jamie Benn, Dallas
Hardest shot: Zdeno Chara, Boston
Elimination shootout: Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay

Full results are here.

Video of Benn in final round

Benn goes next to last in All-Star draft

January, 26, 2012
Stars forward Jamie Benn was almost the last player selected in Thursday night’s NHL All-Star Fantasy Draft, but Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara decided that Benn would be the 37th player selected and not the 38th.

Benn and San Jose’s Logan Couture were the last two players left in the draft and it was Chara’s decision as to which player would be picked next and which player would be the last one left.

“It’s never easy to leave one guy standing, to be the last one,” Chara said as he made his selection. “But Jamie really deserves to be picked because he had surgery a couple days ago and he still showed up. That’s a big credit to him. So I am picking Dallas Star Jamie Benn.”

Couture, as the last player to be picked in the draft, received a car.

“It was a little bit of a win-win there. Get picked or get a car,” said Benn. “I’m happy I got picked.”

Benn said the experience was fun and a little tense.

“Coming down to the wire it was a little nerve-wracking, but fun at the same time. We’re here for a good weekend and I am looking forward to it,” Benn said. “I don’t think [where you get picked] matters. I think just getting the chance to be at an All-Star game is a pretty good honor. For Zdeno to throw out a shout out there was really nice of him.”

Chara had the first overall pick in the draft and selected Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk, meaning Benn will be teammates with one of the players he was looking forward to seeing at the All-Star festivities this weekend.

“Maybe Datsyuk, he’s pretty cool. He’s a player I like to watch,” Benn said when asked earlier this week about the players he was looking forward to skating with in Ottawa. “(Claude) Giroux, (Steven) Stamkos, all the top players in this league are pretty exciting to watch and to get a chance to skate with them is pretty cool.”

Giroux and Stamkos will skate for Team Alfredsson, which is captained by Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson. Alfredsson’s first pick and the second overall pick of the draft was his Ottawa teammate, defenseman Erik Karlsson.

The All-Star Skills competition is Saturday and the NHL All-Star Game is Sunday. The selections in Thursday’s draft are below.

Stars-Lightning photos

January, 21, 2012
Here's a link to some photos of last night's Dallas Stars-Tampa Bay Lightning game. You can see all the photos by Shannon Byrne here or by clicking below on the photo of Brenden Morrow blocking a shot by Steven Stamkos.

#91 Steven Stamkos has an open net to shoot at until #10 Brenden Morrow drops to block the shot and make the save.Dallas Stars vs. Tampa Bay Lightning, January 20, 2012.

Stars believe power play results will come

January, 20, 2012

FRISCO -- The numbers say the power play isn’t clicking for the Dallas Stars. But the Stars believe they are doing a lot of good things with the man-advantage and the numbers will eventually start to turn their way.

“I think sometimes everyone gets so results based – and it is results based business – however results just don’t always turn on a dime,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “Our power play has created chances. We’ve had guys at the net, we’ve hit posts and they just haven’t gone in. “

The Stars are 4-41 (9.8%) on the power play over the last 13 games. Heading into Thursday’s night’s game they were at 14.1 percent for the season, ranking 26th in the league.

The power play, which is missing two key players at the moment in Mike Ribeiro and Jamie Benn, has scored in two of the last four games and those goals were key in helping the Stars get points.

“I think we have been consistently better at getting chances and getting zone time,” said Stars defenseman Alex Goligoski. “Earlier in the season we were having problems with our breakout and we couldn’t get pucks back. We’ve been a lot better at that. We’re obviously in a funk but you just keep doing the things you have to do to get out of it.”

The Stars got some results Tuesday, getting people and pucks to the net and they got a puck to go in off the stick of captain Brenden Morrow.

“It’s simple,” said Goligoski. “It’s how you score.”

The Stars’ other power play in that game was cut short by a penalty on Dallas, something that’s happened a bit too often for Gulutzan’s tastes. Four times over the last nine games the Stars have been taken off a power play by a penalty.

But overall, the Stars think they are doing plenty of good things, and think things eventually will start to go their way.

“That tide will change. It will change at some point,” Gulutzan said. “You look at Tampa Bay, who we’re playing [Friday], their power play is right around ours at 14 percent. With the same personnel – (Steven) Stamkos, (Vincent) Lecavalier, (Martin) St. Louis and (Ryan) Malone standing in front, they ran 20.5 percent and were sixth in the league last year. What do you attribute that to? It just happens and sometimes confidence is a big thing on the power play. You get one or two to go in and you need some basic structure to do it, but power plays can be fickle. They can get hot and cold.”

Said Goligoski: “There are games where we hit four pipes on the power play. You do the right things consistently and eventually everything will shake out and you’ll be where you want to be.”

Notes: Larsen activated

*Stars defenseman Philip Larsen, who has missed the last eight games with a concussion, has been activated from injured reserve. He will be available to play Friday, but may not play until Saturday.

*Defensemen Stephane Robidas (foot) and Sheldon Souray (foot) did not practice Thursday, but are expected to play Friday.

*Kari Lehtonen is expected to start in goal for the Stars Friday.

Stars in back-to-backs

The Stars will play their eighth set of back-to-back games this season, hosting Tampa Bay Friday and then playing at Minnesota on Saturday.

The Stars are 3-3-1 in first games of back-to-back sets this season and 0-6-1 in the second game.

Ted Lindsay Award finalists

May, 5, 2011
The NHLPA has announced the finalists for the Ted Lindsay Award, which goes to the league's outstanding player as voted on by members of the NHLPA. Here's the release:
The National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) announced today that Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks, Daniel Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks and Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning have been selected as finalists for the 2010-11 Ted Lindsay Award. TheTed Lindsay Award is presented annually to the “Most Outstanding Player” in the NHL, as voted by fellow members of the NHLPA.

The Ted Lindsay Award is the only award voted on by the players themselves, carrying on the tradition established by the Lester B. Pearson Award since 1970-71. The Award honours Ted Lindsay, an All-Star forward known for his skill, tenacity, leadership, and for his role in establishing the original Players' Association.

This year’s group of all new finalists – Perry, Stamkos, & Sedin – ensures that there will be a new recipient for the first time in three years as Alex Ovechkin won the “Most Outstanding Player” award the last three consecutive seasons (2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10).

The Ted Lindsay Award will be presented at the 2011 NHL Awards in Las Vegas on June 22, 2011 to one of the following finalists:

Corey Perry, of Peterborough, Ontario, played in all 82 games in the 2010-11 season for the Anaheim Ducks. Corey’s selection as a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award is his first since entering the NHL in the 2005-06 season. En route to capturing the Maurice Richard Trophy for most goals (50) and finishing third in points (98), Corey was especially dominant in the Ducks’ run to the playoffs. With this nomination, Corey is looking to become the first member of the Ducks to receive the “Most Outstanding Player” award as voted on by the players, and is seeking to add this to his impressive list of accomplishments that includes the Memorial Cup (2004-05 – London), Stanley Cup (2006-07 – Anaheim) and Olympic gold medal (2010 – Canada).

Daniel Sedin, of Ornskoldvik, Sweden, appeared in all 82 games in the 2010-11 season for the Vancouver Canucks. Daniel’s first selection as a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award follows his brother Henrik’s nomination last season. Daniel had an exceptional 2010-11 campaign by all standards, securing the Art Ross Trophy for most points in the regular season (104), tying for fourth in goals (41), and placing third in both assists (63) and game-winning goals (10), while helping lead Vancouver to capturing their first Presidents’ Trophy. With this nomination, Daniel is seeking to become just the second Canucks player to receive the “Most Outstanding Player” award as voted on by the players (Markus Naslund – 2002-03 Lester B. Pearson Award).

Steven Stamkos, of Markham, Ontario, appeared in all 82 games in the 2010-11 season for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Steven’s selection as a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award is his first, and comes one season after he earned a share of the Maurice Richard Trophy for most goals (51). The 21-year-old helped the Lightning return to the playoffs for the first time since 2007, while finishing second in goals (45), placing fifth in points (91) and contributing the second most power play goals in the NHL (17), behind Daniel Sedin’s 18. With this nomination, Steven is looking to join teammate Martin St. Louis (2003-04 Lester B. Pearson Award) as only the second member of the Lightning to receive the “Most Outstanding Player” award as voted on by the players.

Richards, Eriksson to play on Team Lidstrom

January, 28, 2011

Dallas Stars forwards Brad Richards and Loui Eriksson will be teammates at the NHL All-Star game on Sunday as members of Team Lidstrom.

Detroit Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom, one of the two All-Star captains, took Richards in the 11th round (22nd overall) of the NHL All-Star fantasy draft Friday night in Raleigh. Eriksson was selected in the 17th round (34th overall) .

Carolina's Eric Staal is the other captain and had the first overall pick in the draft. He used that to pick his teammate, Carolina goaltender Cam Ward.

Lidstrom used his first round pick to take Tampa Bay forward Steven Stamkos.

Vancouver's Sedin twins went in the third round. Team Staal took Daniel and Team Lidstrom took Henrik.

Eric Staal took his brother, Marc of the New Rangers, in the seventh round (13th overall).

Toronto's Phil Kessel was the final player taken in the draft, going in the 18th round (36th overall).

The rosters for the game with the order of selection is here.

Stars-Lightning thoughts

October, 18, 2010
Some thoughts and observations from Monday’s game that saw the Dallas Stars’ four-game winning streak come to an end with a 5-4 loss at Tampa Bay.
  • Special teams were a disaster in this game and special teams play has a way of deciding a lot of games. It started off well with Toby Petersen scoring a shorthanded goal, but it went downhill from there. Tampa Bay was 4-5 on the power play and the Stars were 0-5 on the power play. The Stars’ special teams have struggled this season, especially the penalty kill. It is now 15-25 (60.0%) on the season and a dismal 6-14 (42.9%) on the road. It was a sore spot last season and it’s a problem again. It’s still early, but it’s a cause for concern. Both teams had five power plays. Tampa got ten shots on goal and the Stars got four. One team is doing a better job of keeping shots from getting to the net and it’s not the Stars.
  • The shots disparity numbers got more disparate after Monday’s game. The Stars were outshot 44-19 and have now been outshot 190-109 through the first five games. That works out to an average of 38.0 shots against per game to 21.8 shots for per game. Getting out shot by that wide of a margin regularly is going to catch up with you eventually, and it did for the Stars on Monday.
  • The Stars have been able to survive the shots disparity through the first four games because of the big guy in net. Kari Lehtonen was excellent again Monday, stopping 39 shots. He gave up five but he kept the Stars hanging around it and made some great saves or this game could have totally gotten out of hand. He probably would like to have the rebound that led to the Steve Stamkos goal back, but other than that he was under siege most of the night and did an admirable job.
  • Marc Crawford did some line juggling as the game moved along. He moved Brandon Segal to the Morrow-Ribeiro line and put together of a trio of Tom Wandell, Steve Ott and Adam Burish. He also put Stephane Robidas and Matt Niskanen together to try to generate some more offense from the blue line.
  • Steven Stamkos had 3 points (1 goals, 2 assists) for Tampa Bay and Dominic Moore scored a pair, but the guy who really stood out to me was defenseman Victor Hedman. He was outstanding. He and defense partner Brett Clark did a nice job on the Stars’ top line, holding James Neal, Brad Richards and Loui Eriksson without a shot on goal through the first two periods. Hedman picked up two assists as well.