Saying the Dallas Stars lead the Central Division has a nice ring to it. Their 4-2-1 record is good enough for 1st in the division. It’s only October, and there is a long way to go, but the Stars are starting off great this year. There are several new stories as to why that is. The big 3 are back, each putting up 7 points in 7 games. Wyatt Johnston is also starting off his career well. His roster spot is secure for now. Sure the last road trip was underwhelming but the Stars are still in 1st. Now the expectations change.
The Big 3
Jason Robertson, Roope Hintz, and Joe Pavelski all lead the team with 7 points in 7 games each. Pavelski once again leads the team with 4 goals. Robertson is getting warmed up as the expectations for him this year are high. Expect a division title if these 3 can maintain the point-per-game basis.
The New Kid on the Block
Wyatt Johnston has stormed out of the gate in his NHL career with 3 goals in his first 7 games. This offense is stacked if he can continually produce like he already is. This 2021 First Round draft pick is already showing his confidence, especially with how he is handling himself through the first 7 games. Imagine how stacked this offense can be if he puts up at least 20 in his rookie season.
Iffy Road Trip
Part of the winning formula for hockey is that you have to win on the road. This recent 4 game road trip through the east did not have a high approval rating. Their 1-2-1 record needs improving because they will face the same amount of games away from the American Airlines Center than at it during the regular season. Winning on the road is a necessity.
This is clearly a different team than last year. Offensive production is much better as the Stars are routinely finding ways to put the puck into the back of the net. It is far too early to be “scoreboard watching” but the Stars should set the bar higher for the season. A division title is not entirely out of the realm of possibility. We’ll cover playoff expectations much, much later.
More road games are on the way after this next homestand. Separate 3-game road trips sandwich a single home game as they play 6 out of 7 on the road after this next homestand. The Stars will need to keep up with the scoring which shouldn’t be a problem. It’s also worth noting that Jake Oettinger is doing what he does best with a .953 save percentage, one point number shy of his playoff performance last season. The Stars are a good hockey team and we’ll see if they can keep it up.