Good news, the Dallas Stars fixed their consistency problem! Bad news, they have found consistency in losing games they should be winning. The Stars were earlier getting outshot by their opponents and only squeaking out wins past regulation. This shifted over their homestand. They outshot Vegas 34-21 and outshot Ottawa 39-24 in their latest homestand. By all means, the Stars should’ve won both games. This is especially clear when the quality scoring chances are looked at.
The unofficial quality scoring chances in the game against Vegas were 28-14 in favor of Dallas. Looking at this tweet, the Stars led in every category except blocks and goals. The only place that matters at the end of the game for their results and standing is the goals category, and the stars are unable to capitalize on their chances.
When the Golden Knights scored only their second goal of the game with barely over a minute to go in the third, it forced the game into overtime where the Stars subsequently lost. The Stars scored one goal in the first, one goal in the second and none in the third. This low scoring hockey makes the margin for error very small, and the team needs to activate their offensive weapons that they do already possess to give more of a buffer. The Stars have yet to score three goals in a game this season.
The unofficial quality scoring chances in the Ottawa game were 30-17 in favor of Dallas. Similarly, to the Vegas game, the Stars played what should have been their best game of hockey yet. They appeared engaged throughout the sixty minutes for the most part, and yet surrendered four goals to a Senators team that has just declared its rebuild to be over. The Stars got none of the four points in their season series against Ottawa.
Ottawa’s Josh Norris scored two goals in that game, which ties the season high total for a Stars’ player. The two-goal season lead is a five-way tie between Miro Heiskanen, Joe Pavelski, Michael Raffl, Tyler Seguin, and Luke Glendening. In this game, Dallas saw breakaways for Roope Hintz and John Klingberg that did not materialize in goals. And in the case of Klingberg, he did not even get a shot off on net. While scoring does feel inevitable for players like Hintz and Jason Robertson considering the chances they are getting, the current state of the Stars offensive finish is simply not good enough.
The Stars are third last in the league in team goals above expected which is only above Toronto and Chicago. Toronto has won its last two games and is starting to click again. Chicago is off to its worst start in history with a roster that has seen many changes, not to mention how it is engulfed in the sexual assault atrocities that were committed and covered up that are coming to light now.
With the healthy players that the Stars now have and as they become more comfortable in games and finding chemistry, the team simply must produce. They will see Winnipeg, Calgary, and Vancouver on their upcoming road trip. Winnipeg is a divisional rival and all three teams are conference rivals. It will be crucial for this team to find wins.
One other note is that Thomas Harley was recalled from the Texas Stars on November 1. Head coach Rick Bowness says that he will play on this trip, and there is hope that his offensive ability will continue to push the team. The Dallas Stars play next in Winnipeg on November 2.