Dowell scored one of the two goals (Photo: Bridget Samuels/Flickr)
The Dallas Stars had points at stake as they lead their division by one point and couldn’t take advantage tonight. Instead of a dominating and pesky game that the fans were used to seeing, they decided to do the opposite and drop to the Vancouver Canucks, 5-2. The game was lopsided in that Dallas got chances but couldn’t put the puck past Cory Schneider, who stifled the Stars as Vancouver capitalized on mistakes from the Stars. We thought at first that Roberto Luongo was going to get the start for the Canucks, but he was late scratch due to a sore neck. I really wanted Luongo to be in the net instead of Schneider, who the Stars had played against in previous games.
You would expect the Stars to play a better game like they did in their game against the Calgary Flames but they didn’t. The Stars were coming out fast and had the momentum until the player I spotted in the game preview to watch, Chris Higgins, got the 1st goal for the Vancouver Canucks for a 1-0 lead. Dallas wanted to get the first goal because they were a dominating 30-8-3 after scoring the first goal. They even outshot the Canucks 13-7 but couldn’t get anything passed Cory Schneider. Stars did bring life back into the team as Steve Ott tied the game up at 1-1 with a beautiful shot that stunned Schneider. The Stars had more opportunities as Ott, who had a breakaway, could not score on the opportunity to make the Dallas Stars go up 2-1 as Cory Schneider made an absolutely amazing save.
After that breakaway opportunity, Sami Salo hit a long shot that put the Canucks up 2-1 on the power play. It seemed like the puck was deflected in as Kari Lehtonen could not see the shot as he was screened by Alex Burrows, who was in front of the net. After that goal was let in by the Stars, it seemed like the Stars were lifeless and the Canucks had energy. Andrew Alberts got his 2nd goal of the season as Stephane Robidas deflected the goal past Kari Lehtonen due to a mental error by a couple of rookies, Ryan Garbutt and Reilly Smith, who were trapped in the offensive zone. Then, Alex Burrows makes the game unbearable for the Stars as he got his 25th goal of the season as Alex Goligoski lost track of Burrows making the lead 4-1 in the 3rd period.
Maxim Lapierre makes it a bigger lead, making the game 5-1. But with a hard effort by Dowell, the Stars answered right back with a rare goal by their fourth line as Jake Dowell worked hard and cashed in for his 2nd goal of the year, but as we all know the Canucks won the game 5-2.
Kari Lehtonen, who started the game and tried his hardest, got pulled in the 3rd period after letting 4 goals in as backup Richard Bachman gives Kari the rest. It’s a good decision by Glen Gulutzan to give Kari a rest since they are going to be a facing a bigger challenge when they face the San Jose Sharks in a Pacific Division battle.
Dallas Stars will have a chance to redeem themselves tomorrow when they face the Sharks. We will either see the Stars in 1st place or see them out of the playoffs. Hopefully Dallas will work on their mistake and get a much needed win.
-Stars are on back to back game in which the Stars are not good at.
-The Stars were playing without two of their forwards as Eric Nystrom and Radek Dvorak missed games due to injuries and will miss the Sharks game as well. The Stars are hoping these two will be healthy for their home game on the 3rd.
-Michael Ryder’s & Mike Ribeiro’s point streaks ended today as both of them were held off the scoresheet.