Goals have been elusive to the Dallas Stars this season. Through consistency issues and battling through injury, there has been meager amount of production from the Stars lineup that is usually very plentiful.
Last season the Stars had a total of 235 goals for (18th in the NHL) and 225 against (7th in the NHL), leaving the team with a +10 goal differential.
What has kept the Stars above water has been their ability to keep opposing goals out of the net. Let’s take a closer look at the Goals For and Goal Against of this season.
The Stars only have 186 goals for in the entire season overall, a total that has put them at 29th in the NHL for “Goals For”. Below them are the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks with 174 and 173 goals respectively. The Stars have made 2,257 shots on goal throughout 74 games but defeating the opposing goaltender has been tricky.
The Stars power play has struggled alongside their scoring. Over the course of their 190 power play chances, the Stars have scored 36 times, giving them a 18.95% on the conversion.
Only six players on the Stars have at least 10 goals. Of those six are Tyler Seguin (28), Jamie Benn (27), and Alexander Radulov (24), are leading the list. These three have been “The Big Three” for Dallas since Radulov was traded there. Even now they’re the three helping push this team into the right direction.
It’s a tough look for a team striving to make it far into the playoffs. Although they struggle in making goals, the Stars do a great job of stopping the opponents from scoring.
The “Goals Against” is a whole other story for the Dallas Stars. The Stars have only 182 goals against and are 2nd in the NHL for the lowest Goals Against. The only team with less goals against is the New York Islanders at 177 goals against.
The Stars have Ben Bishop and Anton Khudobin to thank for that. The goalie duo have faced a total of 2,339 shots and only allowed those 182 to pass by them. Although there have been big plays from the defense this season, these goalies deserve the credit based on their outstanding ability to remain a steady peg for this Dallas team through thick and thin.
The Stars penalty kill unit is a mirror of their goal situation. While the power play sits at 23rd in the NHL, the penalty kill is all the way in 5th with a 82.4% kill rate. The Stars have only given up 38 power play goals of the 216 penalties they’ve been called for.
Where the Stars are now with 186 goals for and 182 goals against, that leaves them at a +4 differential, which isn’t absolutely terrible place to be in but this team has potential to be so much more. We’ve seen the Stars get confident and dazzle the opposition with goals. Their confidence has wavered over the season, understandable when you look at some of the circumstances they were put under.
Another place we see this fall in confidence, besides scoring, is in their puck control. After 74 games, the Stars have held a Corsi For percentage of 48.15%. When it comes to Corsi, anything above 50% means that the team has more control of the puck while on the ice. This number has risen and fallen over the course of this grueling season but it’s a great sign that the Stars have been controlling the puck more and more.
At this point in the season, every goal matters. Those points add up and push the Stars into a safer and more confident seat. When this group gets confident, that’s when the real fun begins!
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