In 30 years of Dallas Stars hockey, the team has seen its share of rivals in the NHL.
Some have come and gone, but like a boomerang, they can come right back with a playoff tilt.
Including a couple of rivalries from Dallas’ early years that have been reignited since the 2013-2014 league standings realignment.
More recent rivalries have also been established within the last 5-10 years.
Here we are going to look at all of those rivalries.
During the Stars’ tenure in the Pacific division (1999-2013), they made a couple of enemies out of two California teams. Whether it was for the division crown or a playoff matchup, there was no question of bad blood and hate when the Stars played the San Jose Sharks or the Anaheim Ducks.
San Jose Sharks
Dallas went head to head yearly for the Pacific division crown from 1999-2008. But in the playoffs, the Stars owned the Sharks. Beating San Jose in the first round in 1998, 2000, and 2008 were second-round wins.
All games were decided in a respectable six. But Stars fans will always be thankful for getting Joe Pavelski from Hockey Bay.
The Anaheim Ducks and the Stars had better seasons overall. But the Ducks did win two out of three playoff series (though the 2014 Ducks won in six came when the Stars moved to the central). In other series matchups, the Ducks defeated the Stars in six in the 2003 second round. In the first round of 2008, the Stars, led by their power play, dethroned the 2007 Cup champs in six.
Another rivalry we can’t forget about; the Edmonton Oilers. From 1997-2003, the teams met in the playoffs every year except 2002.
After a devastating game-seven loss in 1997, the Stars would go on to knock off the Oilers in the next five meetings.
St. Louis Blues
Ever since 1994, the Stars have had one constant rival. You guessed it—the St. Louis Blues. To date, the Blues have unfortunately had the upper hand in the Dallas vs St. Louis rivalry.
Dallas has beaten the Blues in the playoffs twice. A 1994 series sweep in Dallas’ inaugural year in 1994 after relocating from Minnesota when they were the North Stars.
And a 1999 six-game series second-round win en route to the only Stanley Cup the Stars have won so far.
The Blues have three series wins vs. Dallas: a second-round series sweep in 2001 and winning in seven in 2016 and 2019 (where the Blues claimed their only Stanley Cup).
While the rivalry didn’t quite pick up until 1999, the Colorado Avalanche are certainly an OG amongst Stars’ rivals. The Stars are 3-2 all-time vs the Avs in the playoffs. Three game seven series wins in the west finals 1999, 2000, and a second round win in 2020.
Colorado won in five in two straight years 2004 & 2006, no 2005 season due to a lockout). Highlights of this rivalry include Joe Sakic vs. Mike Modano in the 90s/2Ks and the legend of JFK, aka Joel F _ Kiviranta.
More Recent Rivals
A playoff matchup, divisional rivals since 2013-2014, and a Winter Classic outdoor game held at the Cotton Bowl.
The team was talking about is, of course, the Nashville Predators.
For Stars fans, this shot is often the best memory in the NHL’s southern rivalry.
We cannot forget about a team who has many fans who spend more time hating the Stars for simply existing. While seemingly spending less time cheering for their team. It’s the Minnesota Wild.
Heading into year 11 as divisional rivals, the teams have played each other twice in the playoffs. Both times in the first round, the Stars took the series in six.
Las Vegas Golden Knights
Next up: the Vegas Golden Knights. After splitting two west finals in a span of four years (Dallas won in five in 2020, and Vegas won in six this past season), the Golden Knights have become one of the Stars’ biggest rivals right now.
Plus, after Vegas won the Cup, both teams won it once, and that adds to the drama as both have been two of the West’s best in the last four years.
Detroit Red Wings
Back in the 1990s and 2000s, the Stars had a consistently heated rivalry with the Detroit Red Wings. Both teams were constantly jockeying it out for playoff positioning in the West. There were also three playoff meetings between the two (1995 first round, 1998, and 2008 West finals).
All were won by the team from the motor city. They were making the Red Wings one of, if not the most hated team by many Dallas fans—especially those who grew up in those generations of NHL hockey. Mike Modano also spent all of his playing years with both teams before retiring as a Star in the style of Emmett Smith.
In two out of three years, the Stars had a couple of first-round pow-wows with the Calgary Flames. Playoffs make more NHL rivalries than any other factor. We can also call this rivalry the ‘Joe Nieuwendyk’ series.
Another team to add to this list is one other than the Seattle Kraken. The latest team to step into the NHL world, the Kraken fought the Stars in a memorable seven-game second round. If Vegas and Calgary, as of late, is any indication, then Dallas has made yet another friend from the Pacific division. Wyatt Johnston got the series-winning goal vs. the 2023 Calder Memorial trophy winner Matty Beniers and the Kraken.
Mark Your Calendars
Old school or new, the rivalries always spice up the season for Stars fans.
It makes the game more fun and intense.
When the Stars’ schedule gets released in the summer times or when playoff matchups are drawn, that extra anticipation is felt in the air.
Photo: Defending Big D