Time has passed since the Edmonton Oilers eliminated the Dallas Stars in the playoffs.
Reflection on what went wrong is crucial to maneuvering the offseason to find a better formula for success next year.

These past two seasons were consistent, with the Stars cementing 10 wins in the Stanley Cup playoffs two years in a row. Their playoff record of 10-9 also equals that of last season.

The Stars ran out of gas in the end, losing three consecutive games to exit the playoffs.

Now, the offseason is approaching with expectations of a busy one. General Manager of the Year Jim Nill has his work cut out for him.

Lots of moves are expected to push the Stars over the cusp of their recent 3rd-Round exits.

How the Season Ended

“Coulda, woulda, shoulda” is potentially the death of hockey teams. The Stars could have won the series against the Edmonton Oilers. 0 powerplay goals in a playoff series means teams are not bound to move on. Even one or two powerplay goals meant the difference maker in that series. Now the Oilers are in the Stanley Cup Final, albeit down 0-2 to the Florida Panthers. Stars fans are aching for a Stanley Cup Final game at the American Airlines Center.

The 2020 Stanley Cup Final occurred at Rogers Place, while the 2000 one ended at Reunion Arena. The Stars are going on 26 years without a Stanley Cup, and it’s time to end that drought.

Next Season

Swallowing the pill of defeat with a good team is a tough one when it seemed like the Stars edged on the cusp of summiting the mountain.

Now, it’s time to move on.

Jim Nill became the NHL’s General Manager of the Year, which was deservedly so. His hands are full with the Stars’ over $16 million in cap space this offseason. Two players that need a re-signing without question are Chris Tanev and Matt Duchene. Chris Tanev is a defensive weapon the Stars desperately need to keep. He made an impact immediately after joining the team near the trade deadline. Keeping him is pivotal to bolstering the blue line.

Matt Duchene became a low-risk/high-reward acquisition that paid off in dividends. He scored arguably the biggest goal of the season, eliminating his former club in double overtime of Game 6 in Denver.

Free Agency galore is coming, with new players potentially joining the team. The Stars are a few key pieces away from the long-coveted Stanley Cup. Let this disappointing loss be a lesson to a team with a bright future ahead.
At least one Stanley Cup is on its way to this team, and a window of opportunity has been open for several years.


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