Hockey season is chugging along and the Dallas Stars complete another month. The All-Star break is now upon us as the unofficial half of the season. The Stars’ representative in the All-Star Game is having quite the season. Jason Robertson’s 66 points in 51 games is leading the way by a 19-point margin. This mid-season break is a time to rest, recover, and regroup. January had its ups and downs with several points left on the table. January wasn’t the best but the schedule in February is much easier. Several blown leads and overtime losses put a damper on the winter mood.
The Stars hit their stride towards the middle of the month. The Stars won 3/4 games in the 3rd week with several 4-0 victories against Vegas, Los Angeles, and Arizona. Their record of 5-4-4 is nothing to write home about but it is still good enough for the Division lead. The Stars go into the break atop the Western Conference in standings. Their 3.39 average in goals per game is helping with a 3rd place ranking of a +40 goal differential.
Five out of the fourteen games ended past regulation. The Stars lost 4 of those, including 3-in-a-row at the end of the month. That is a 5-8 record if you count overtime losses. They left way too many points on the table. Leaving many points on the table won’t cut it. The President’s Trophy might be out of reach but home-ice advantage is a big thing to have in the playoffs.
Blown leads will sink any ship in every sport. The Stars should have more points than they do. The best example is an overtime loss to the New York Rangers after shutting them out for 59:59. The Rangers tied the game with under a second left and won in overtime. It’s alright if this happens as a one-time thing but blown leads were a staple this month. The Stars held a 3-0 lead in their game against the San Jose Sharks and lost 5-3. The Stars also ended the month with another overtime loss after having a 2-0 lead against the New Jersey Devils. Losses like this are unacceptable for a team with high hopes of a deep playoff run.
The Stars get some long-needed rest, playing 51 games in 107 days. 51 games are the most that any team has played so far. The Stars will be home for a while after ending January with 3 straight at the American Airlines Center. On top of this long break is another positive with the Stars only playing 2 away games in February. Getting points in 9 out of 13 games in January is not bad, but they can be better.
Photo Credit: Dallas Stars Twitter