Yes it surprised me too but I’m not kidding, the Dallas Stars defense man Trevor Daley – usually renowned for his expertise in screening his own goalie and turning the puck over in his own zone – scored a delicious shootout winner as the Stars escaped the Jobing.com Arena with a 3-2 win. The goal in the eighth round of the skills competition and proved once again – like Stephane Robidas did last season – that you don’t have to be the teams mega-star to be a hero.
Having twice retrieved the game after going 1-0 and 2-1 down, it would’ve been easy for this Stars team to shut up shop and play for the single point but I have to say we once again showed tremendous heart and a will to win. With the Coyotes leading 2-1 just short of midway through the third, Adam Burish found a neat little hole in front of the net and somehow through a crowd, Ribeiro managed to squeeze the puck out front, taking a redirection from Burish which seemed to take an age to find the goal. This after Sheldon Souray fired one of those cannons of his to tie at one a-piece.
Goaltenders Mike Smith (a former Star by the way) and Kari Lehtonen played out of their skins and it was hard luck on Smith who finished the game with a perfectly respectable 33 saves for the home side. This result though was just the tonic after our second defeat of the season at Los Angeles – the team we face in our next game, at home this time.
All things considered, this road trip has been pretty steady and – having lost only the one game to LA of the four we played – could’ve easily gone much worse. Add to that the fact that we have no injuries so far, we’re in great shape in these first few games.
Against the Kings on Thursday, look for our Stars to come out hungry. We’ve been lambasted in certain circles for being a one-man band and relying far too heavily on the otherworldly play of Lehtonen. We’ve never been a one man team and it’s going to be interesting to say the least to see who will take the offense by the scruff of the neck.