The Anaheim Ducks had won four straight games. They came into Dallas on Feb 8, to face the Stars, having already won the first game of this five game road trip. Head coach Bruce Boudreau had expressed concern with the way his team had played during the 3-0 shutout win over Colorado two nights earlier. As it turned out, his concern was justified.
First period - The Dallas Stars came out with clearly more jump than Anaheim. Trevor Daly, who would go on to have a great overall game, put the home team up 1-0, with a power play goal at 8:48. In all, it would be a frustrating period for the Ducks. Corey Perry seemed a bit on edge. When Stephane Robidas appeared to have gotten away with spearing Perry, the latter took exception and challenged Robidas. Both got 5 mins for fighting, at 11:02. Just 1:32 later, Brad Staubitz (who was in the penalty box when Dallas scored their first goal) leveled Brenden Dillon in the neutral zone. The result was a 5 min major for slashing, and 10 mins for head-butting, resulting in a disqualification, and a five minute power play for Dallas. Staubitz would again be the goat. Jamie Benn scored at 12:46 to give Dallas a 2-0 lead.
The first period ended with Dallas up 2-0, and having outshot Anaheim, 16-7.
Second period - The Ducks began with a change of goaltenders. Jonas Hiller had started the game, but did not return after intermission, due to a "lower body injury". Viktor Fasth took over between the pipes, and Anaheim played much better in this period. Just 15 seconds after a Ducks power play ended, Corey Perry took the puck from down low in the Dallas zone, and skated to the top of the faceoff circle, where he gave a pass to Luca Sbisa. Sbisa hammered a slapshot, which was deflected in by Nick Bonino and narrowed the score to 2-1 at 15:23. The Ducks had a great opportunity to tie the game with under four minutes left in the period. Andrew Cogliano and Saku Koivu had a 2 on 1 break. About 10 feet away from Stars' goalie Kari Lehtonen, Cogs held the puck just long enough to make a short pass to Daniel Winnick who had been trailing the play. Winnick deked to his forehand side, shifted to his backhand, and then tried to elevate the puck into the net from point blank range. Lehtonen held his ground and made a fantastic glove save.
The second period ended with Dallas up 2-1. Ducks outshot the Stars 13-5.
Third period - This was a classic defensive clampdown by the Dallas Stars. They did get an insurance goal from Loui Eriksson at 12:48 to put them up 3-1. The Stars only managed seven shots on goal but more importantly, they held the Ducks to just one shot on goal. Yes, one shot in the entire period.
Though the Ducks did have their chances, they did not play a consistent enough game, to win. Dallas defenseman Trevor Daly not only scored, but also chased down both Corey Perry and Kyle Palmieri on what would have been breakaway chances.
Final score: Dallas 3, Ducks 1
Shots on goal: Dallas 28, Ducks 21
Power play: Dallas 2-5, Ducks 0-3
3 stars of the game (all Dallas players):
#1 - Trevor Daly
#2 - Kari Lehtonen
#3 - Jamie Benn
** Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler missed his third consecutive game with an "upper body injury". This was the first game for newly acquired defenseman Ben Lovejoy, He led the team in shots on goal, with four. Rookie Emerson Etem skated on the top line with Perry and Getzlaf, for the second consecutive game.
Ducks overall record is now 7-2-1 (2nd place in Western Conference)
Road trip continues Saturday night in St. Louis vs the Blues.
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