The Stanley Cup playoffs really are the most wonderful time of the year. After the Minnesota Wild won a double overtime game where the two teams looked so evenly matched, the Dallas Stars showed up big in game two with a statement victory.
In a game with over 90 penalty minutes handed out, the Dallas Stars looked like the team that was top the Central Division for most of the 2022-23 season. So many players got involved offensively for the team like Tyler Sequin and Jamie Benn as well as Roope Hintz, who registered a hat trick on the night.
A best of seven series has many different ups and downs, so the two teams won’t have a lot of time to dwell on this game before heading into game three on Friday night. So, let’s just focus on a few thoughts after the game.
Three thoughts after the Dallas Stars big win in game two over the Wild
1. The choice to go to Fleury looks like a mistake
The Wild played an all around awful game in game two. It doesn’t just fall on Fleury for the team losing this one, however some of his goals were not the strongest. Take for example this goal by Hintz below. Obviously it was a breakaway which after a turnover so it is not completely on Fleury here, but the way he tried to play this one just feels off.
I do see the reasoning behind giving Fleury the start in game two. The Wild felt like they had two great goalies who can play, and if they chose to just play Filip Gustavsson they would be overworking him after a double OT game on Monday as well as making Fleury more rusty after not playing even longer. The move to rotate the goalies can be something the Wild do, but I feel like it would be a better option after two games, or only after a loss. Here is what Wild head coach Dean Evason said about Fleury’s performance via ESPN,
"Nothing was on Fleury tonight, it was all on us. … They had a short-handed breakaway and two power-play goals. What would you like Fleury to do?”"
2. The Dallas Stars did not look short handed
The Stars were without Joe Pavelski yet they were flying all on cylinders. The team did not skip a beat for 60 minutes and really did show up to play. With so many players scoring like Dadonov, Benn, Seguin and Hintz, this team might just be the playoff threat everyone thought they were entering the postseason.
3. Emotions are high
Six ten minute game misconducts were handed out late in the game on Wednesday. These two teams are showcasing the nasty side of a best of seven Stanley Cup Playoff series. While tempers can flair in a one sided game, these two teams probably are going to pick up right where they left off on Friday.