I don’t think anyone would question the Capitals are the better team right now, but the Stars were close enough that this game was far from being predetermined.
For several moments during the game, the Stars actually had everyone thinking they were going to pull this game out, but goaltending just let them down in key moments.
When Ben Bishop was signed, I along with many other fans thought this was going to be the difference maker.
However, while Bishop has had his moments of greatness and has been impressive at home, he has been very pedestrian on the road and has just given up far too many easy goals.
Both the game-tying goal in the third period and the OT goal last night would fall into that category.
The former came less than a minute after Radulov had put the Stars ahead with under four minutes to play.
His goal had not even been announced yet when Connolly got one past Bishop with a clean line of sight and no excuses other than Bishop was just too slow to react to the shot.
Hitchcock addressed this goal after the game, stating, “The third goal shouldn’t have gone in. We got beat on the boards three times. Puck was in the net because of it. We had earned the right to finish the game off strong. Game over.”
Dallas is going to make the playoffs—of this there is little doubt.
However, the problems they’re having are popping up against the very teams they will see in the postseason, and they’re losing these games more often than not.
Is it Bishop? Is it sloppy play? Is it the defense breaking down or forwards not coming in to help?
Honestly, it is a combination of all three, and it is something the coach will have to fix if we are going to see a deep playoff run that ends with a Stanley Cup hoisting in Dallas.
Jamie Oleksiak has been traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a conditional fourth-round pick. This is something of a blow to the physical play of the team, as he was one of the better fighters and bigger presences on the ice.
Dallas converted one of four power play opportunities.
Bishop saved a very pedestrian four of 28 shots.
The Dallas Stars (18-14-3) stay home for another challenging game with the Chicago Blackhawks (17-11-5) arriving on Thursday night.