There comes a time in everyone's life when they must look in the mirror. Delusions and hopes often can send us a message that we are good enough, strong enough, and doggone it, people like us. But, what if we aren't good enough?
What if we were a bit delusional when we thought this team was stocked enough to surely make the playoffs, and maybe challenge for some home ice in Round 1? What if I thought the mere passage of time was enough to take some of the youth to the next level? What if the return of some from injury was not enough to move this team from out of the playoffs in 2009 to into the playoffs in 2010?
I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings, but I sense the grim reaper is on its way to see our Dallas Stars.
Having seen the first 5 games in the post Olympic segment of the season in person, I am sad to report that the Stars are just not good enough right now. I wish they were good enough. I wish they had enough in their tank. I wish I could assure those who ask me every day that they will shake out of it and make the playoffs.
But, I need to be truthful. Against the Kings, Blues, Penguins, Capitals, and Sabres, the Stars have been out-played in all 5 games. They are 1-4, with the lone win in Washington an amazing magic trick that should be credited to Marty Turco, a little luck, and a big 3rd period.
They have been outscored 25-11. They have been out shot 178-138. They have been badly outplayed.
They have not been near good enough.
I wish I could tell you why it is what it is. I wish I had more than just theories as to why our Stars are finishing 2nd in most games they play these days. But, the truth is that they do. They are unable to impose their will on their opponent. They are unable to play physical enough with physical teams, nor are they able to play skilled enough with skill teams. They seem to be neither fish nor fowl.
And now, with 16 games to play, we face the reality that the Stars are 5 points out of the final spot. If, Calgary goes 8-8 on the way in, they would finish with 91 points. That, of course, means the Stars need more than 10 wins the rest of the way. And, our Stars have not won 3 straight games yet this entire year.
You may be asking yourself why I would write this on DallasStars.com. Shouldn't I have my pom-poms out and tell you that they are ready to start winning 7 out of 9? Maybe.
But, the bosses here have always told me to speak my mind. They have told me to tell it to you straight. So I am doing my best.
I hope to be wrong, but as of right now, if I had to give you my prediction of the final month, I don't like what I am seeing at all. This just looks like a team that has lost its way. Those who have gas left in the tank are having trouble putting it all together. Those who have no gas left in the tank are running on fumes.
Maybe the Stars can use this declaration as motivation. Print it, and post it, and if 1 guy plays better to show me that I am wrong, then it is worth it. I want this team to win badly. I am happy when playoff hockey approaches. But, the storm has arrived. Our 2010 Stars appear to be on the outside looking in.
Please, I beg you, prove me wrong, boys. 6 games in a row at home may be your last chance.