In other Eastern Conference play, the Sabres lost to the Sens again, for the second time in four days. Not sure what's going on there, but even after that, the Sabres are still comfortably atop the entire Eastern Conference with 33 points.
This Stars game was in my 24-game pack, but something came up at work, and I didn't go. I probably could have gotten out of the work thing, but I took into consideration that the last four times we've played Dallas, it's been a complete disaster. To wit:
- December 22, 2002. Stars @ Canes.
Carolina wins a very boring game 1-0. Even if I use the Wayback machine, I can't find any proof of what the standings were, but memory tells me that the Canes were tied for first with the Caps in the Southeast after that game. However, the Canes went into a horrible tailspin, losing 19 of their next 22 games. Obviously, when you lose like that, you have no chance.
Included in that 22 game skid was the second in this list.
- February 11, 2003. Canes @ Stars
Dallas wins 2-1 in overtime. Sergei Zubov scores the game winner with one tenth of a second remaining in overtime. As a side note, it was in this game that one of the most ridiculous and famous fights in my memory took place. Click here (or on the embedded player below) to view Aaron Downey's one punch knockout of Jesse Boulerice.
- December 22, 2003. Stars @ Canes
Dallas wins 3-1. Two words to describe the horror of this game. Clay Aiken. He sang the Anthem and "performed" during the intermissions. As if that weren't enough, Kerry Fraser was one of the officials that night. That's always enough. And the Stars decimated us behind a great night from Jere Lehtinen, who scored two goals and assisted on the other. The game-winner was a shorthanded goal. Yuck.
- December 2, 2005. Canes @ Stars
Dallas wins 5-4 in a thrilling shootout game. During the overtime period, with just :46 seconds to play, Dallas committed a deliberate illegal substitution (too many men on the ice) penalty. According to some rule or other, since there wasn't enough time for the penalty to be served in its entirety, this should have resulted in a penalty shot. The refs weren't aware of that rule, and no such call was made. Mike Modano got the difference making goal in the shootout. There was also some matter of debate about the legality of his shootout goal. Read all about the game here.
Earlier that very day, an inexperienced driver made an illegal left turn in front of me, and the end result was that my car (paid in full) was totaled. I had to buy a new (to me) car, and my descent into poverty began. Read about the accident here.
There was nothing disastrous about tonight's tilt with the Stars. There was a really loud car crash right outside my house, but I wasn't in it.
The Canes emerged victorious thanks to an Eric Staal hat trick, the return of defensemen Nic Wallin and Tim Gleason, and the resultant disappearance of Avi Tanabe.
Since the game wasn't televised, my man Bill Purdy was on the job, giving me text message updates from inside the arena. Unfortunately, my VZW service likes to jerk me around sometimes, and I got all of his updates at once, after the game. Oh well.
As expected, Andrew Hutchinson and Avi Tanabe became healthy scratches, and I strongly suspect that Tanabe will find himself in New York's capital city in a matter of days.
Since I didn't get to see the game at all, I can't give out stars. The official stars were Ray Whitney (third), Justin Williams (second), Eric Staal (first)