Thursday, April 27, 2006

Game 3: Avalanche 4, Stars 3

Game 3 in Denver

You would have a hard time believing the events of Game 3 if you didn’t already see them in Game 2. And in 2004. And in 2003. The simple fact of the matter is this: You can explain away a detail here and a detail there about this team’s playoff performances, but when you put them all together, you see a trend of underachieving in the most important time of the year. This group of Dallas Stars appear to have an easy job of winning games in December, but not so much now. Sadly, a very drastic upheaval no doubt awaits these guys. A very likeable group, but surely Tom Hicks is not writing checks because they are good guys.

Notes from Game 3:

• You simply cannot take a penalty when Brendan Morrow did that canceled out a power play and gave the Avalanche one last chance to tie the game up. It looked like a soft call, but you have to weigh the risk/reward on any challenge at that moment of the game, and in hindsight, it just wasn’t worth the risk to even put your stick near the player who was 180 feet from the goal.

• I was asked if the final 2 goals of the game were Turco’s fault during the post game show. Well, here is my answer. He gave up 14 goals in 3 games.

• I hate to belabor this point, but I just can’t move on from it. Do you mean to tell me that with 3 minutes left in game 2 and 3, that the Stars would have the lead, and be on the power play? Then, they would give up the lead and the win within several minutes of game play both nights? If I didn’t just see it, I wouldn’t believe it.

• By the way, down 3-0, let’s also point out that the Stars have 0 goals in the 3rd period and overtime in the series. Doesn’t sound like a team that is prepared to win in the playoffs.

• Isn’t the bottom line in this series the following? Joe Sakic and his line dominated Mike Modano and his line for most if not all of this series? The Stars couldn’t get a handle on Sakic and Hejduk the whole series. In the 82 game regular season, Sakic-Hejduk-Brunette combined for 80 goals, while Modano-Lehtinen-Jokinen combined for 77. But for some reason, the Sakic line looks like the best line since Gretzky-Kurri-Anderson in the mid 80’s, and Modano’s line goes quietly in pretty much every game.

• It is tough to see Bill Guerin back next season. I think he will bounce back from this horrible year, but given how this team obviously feels about him, I don’t think he bounces back in Dallas.

• I endorse Brendan Morrow (above) for captain in 2006-07.

• Friday could very well have all the intensity of a preseason game. Razor said he expects a huge performance from the Stars, but I guess I am convinced that the Stars expect bad things to happen. That disease needs to be cured over the summer.

This is the first of several posts this morning, I believe. I have to go watch the Mavericks game, now. Good times. More links to come.


Anonymous said...

What a sorry excuse for a blog entry. The Stars are done. Let's focus on much bigger news like the Mavs, Choke-o, or the Desperados for that matter.

Sturminator said...


please read the last sentence of the above post...slowly...

mrowl said...

The Stars could have had 2 SCORING forwards for Guerins price tag this year (why an owner should have sucked it up and payed the buyout price). And what has he done? spared us all to death. And BAD radio gives him a pass, because he has a show weekly on the ticket. There should be a full ripping of his play (along with others) today.

Morrow should have been captain 2 years ago. He is the ONLY bright spot of this series. I can't blame last nights loss on him, he has played his ass off, and seems to be the only one that really cares.

Mike Heika needs to re-visit the comments of Turco's Father in last weeks DMN about packing for a long playoff trip. Maybe they already have a golf trip lined up for Saturday???

'04 pissed me off, but '06 is REALLY pissing me off. Does anyone miss those years when we were bitching about the Stars February slump, instead of an April slump???

Pissed off in Flower Mound.

Andrew said...

I totally agree with your suggestion of Morrow as captain next year. Modano, while a great player, just doesn't seem to be a fit for the captain position. My only concern here is that making that change sends Modano's fragile mindset into another funk so that next year is a repeat of 03-04 as he mopes about losing the captaincy. As far as other moves, it'll be interesting to see what they do with Arnott - he has a track record of playing big in contract years so chances are if you sign him you won't get the same guy next year that you have this year. I still think you're stuck with Turco for at least another go around. As far as Guerin, the square peg into round hole cliche seems to apply - great player who just doesn't fit with what they're trying to do. But at this point, the money isn't that much different between buying him out and keeping him here, so what he'll probably be back. Next year's regular season is going to be a long one.

Anonymous said...

Sturm --

I stand by my post. The Stars are not big news. When they lost the first two games, perhaps. But they're now long gone, and it's time to focus on pending issues.


Anonymous said...

Sturm --

My apologies. You meant YOUR last sentence.

Please excuse me, but I had such tired head by the second paragraph of a hockey dominated post that I was starting to nod off...

Ortonius said...

The biggest problem the Stars have is their lack of fire. This team doesn't look like they care if they win or not. They don't have a leader and they don't have a guy that will stand up in the locker room, kick some ass, and get in other player's faces. Hully said it best in his interview that there's no Mike Keene on this team. They need a firey leader and another guy that can create and score.

Mike said...

I would agree that big changes are probably coming. Guerin will certainly be bought out. Arnott will probably not be resigned. As for the more difficult issues, I would think that Tippett's job is in danger. Three straight playoff failures are probably too much for a coach to survive. I don't necessarily think that the Stars are stuck with Turco. There seem to always be deals available where you can trade your disappointing player for another team's disappointment. Turco wasn't great this season, but he has been a great regular season goalie in the past, so some team also looking to dump a disappointing player would probably be willing to take a chance on him. I would agree that Morrow is the leader of this team and should be the captain.

MR said...


Sturminator said...


I don't know what you want us to say about Guerin that we haven't already said or written on this blog. Evidently you didn't hear the postgame last night.


Anonymous said...

Two people for the Stars to get rid of to fix this problem:


Get a goalie in there that doesn't hemmorage goals in the last 5 minutes of games, and get that worthless piece of Never Playoff Successful Crap out of town (Janne) and the Stars have a chance. Seriously.

I'd dump Guerin, too, due to the fact that he's pretty much done. Re-sign Arnott, keep the core together, sign Willie Mitchell, but get rid of the other two FOR SURE.

This has all the makings of a playoff-successful team, but for christ's sake, WHY IS DALEY ON THE BENCH?

Dirty P1 Ray W said...

I sincerely hope Razor is right about the Stars kicking arse in game four Friday but I fear a supreme mail-in.

Rand said...

Thanks Mike. You're the 1st to mention Tippett. Can anyone say 'over-coach'? He lost this series when he over-reacted to game 1 and completely re-arranged the line-up for game 2. You tweak line-ups, you don't turn them upside down; especially this time of year. He obviously forgot that the game belongs to the players, not the coaches. If they want to play like **** that's on them. They're professionals, they know they have to work it out and they know it's their responsibility to prepare for the game. Tippett sent them a message in game 2 that, in his opinion, what they had worked on for 82 games wasn't good enough to win. As Darrel Royal once said, "You've got to dance with who brung ya".

mrowl said...

sturm... I heard the first 5 minutes and went to bed...

If I missed it, then we cool.

and this picture of Morrow from last night is killing me.

Anonymous said...

Who Cares!!! Nobody gives a F about hockey...that's why reruns of the world series of poker on espn gets higher ratings.

Let's move on!!!!!!

MR said...

the reason poker is on, is for people like you who sit in there house all day and win 75 cents at a time for there pizza delievery guy because they are afraid to leave the house or take a shower. or interact with humans. F U.

The Polit Burro said...

Here's what I'd like to see in Game 4:

First, bench Marty Turco for Johan Hedberg. Last night Turco played his first good game of this series but I think you have to scapegoat him since he just signed that phat new contract earlier this season. Benching him for Hedberg sends the message that NO ONE BETTER GET COMFORTABLE in the off season.

Second, deactivate Jaane Niinimaa and activate Trevor Daley. Niinimaa should have been wearing an Avs jersey last night and he's been nothing but a two-for-one giveaway special in this series. He flat out sucks. At this point I'd say that Martin Skoula would be an improvement.

As for next year, I agree about Guerin, Bob. I've never been as excited about a Stars aquisition as I was with him, but this season has been absolutely awful. He doesn't look like he can adapt to the new rules and/or he just can't fit in with Tippett's system.

I would also agree about moving to a new captain. I'm not a Modano hater but the guy is no longer the superstar that many area women and a fair number of fanboys make him out to be. He is a very good player but he does not have the chops to be captain. Captains need to lead and he doesn't. I always hoped that Guerin would be the next Stars' captain but after this season that one is dead and buried.

I think Tippett is safe for one more year. His regular season this year will buy him another chance although it certainly looks like the larger questions about this team are precisely the things that good coaching should address, i.e. the sloppy defense, the stupid penalties down the stretch and the questionable playing time decisions.

Rand said...

I agree with 'the polit burro' 100% except that I hope he's wrong about Tippett lasting another year. Hedberg should have replaced Marty for the 3rd game. Niinimaa should be the defensive injury replacement, period. Guerin's thigh injury from a couple years ago may have taken something from him but he's not the player he once was. Modano is not captain material, man do I miss Hatcher.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Bob for seeing this situation with real eyes...not with those colored over by the drinking of the green kool-aid rah-rah juice.

Hey, I'd like to see a hockey miracle just as much as the next guy but I'd have to rent a DVD to do it.

These guys are done...stick a fork in 'em.

mithrandiryod said...

I hate this, it's like getting a kick in the crotch 2 games in a row. I never really have endorsed Modano as captain. Morrow for captain! (Guy Carboneau would smile and nod approvingly) We need the grumpy old men line back.

rand said...

Captain Morrow & Coach Guy - sounds good

Anonymous said...

I have had my heart ripped out twice in a row. I didnt know I could feel anger and sorrow at the same time. This series has been nothing but Colorado bounces off of Stars or Lanche players and into the net and it frustrates the crap out of me that you cant just go and level everyone out of the crease area. Now I gotta hear it from my best friend who is an Avalanche fan. Turco played well last night but still let in 4. If he wants to be great he needs to learn from the great NJ netminder Brodouer. Our Defense sucks and gets overpowered. They are too small. And who has a good defense now? NJ. They have Dallas's wise trades, eh? Matvichuk, Luckowich. Not to mention Langenbruner who is lighting it up on offense during the playoffs again. Wise moves.

-Very F'ing angry in Downtown

F'in PISSED said...

I waited 2 years for this????
Damn you Stars for giving me hope.

Anonymous said...

Anyone else notice how this team has no stones since bidding Hatcher adios? Razor said it best last night... Colorado is out-Starsing the Stars: They are blocking shots, sacrificing the body, and look like they actually give a cr@p.

Modano, while a good player, is not a good captain. And there's a distinct difference.

Bobs Mom said...

Well, I just went and took a huge Turco with a little Modano on the side...and heres the surprise, the American Standard made the save.

Stars might win tomorrow night if Hedberg is in there. The Stars just dont have any faith in Turdo I mean Turco.

If they do win, please come to the game and bid goodbye to Arnott. No way he will stick around next year.

ps...I used my baby arm to wipe