What an exciting and fun game that was...playoff hockey at its finest! Though they fired 42 shots on net, Dallas could not complete the comeback, and the reigning champs salted the game away late. The loss also means the STARS failed to finish off the Ducks and this series, at least for one more game. They could easily have blown the Ducks away tonight if not for Jean-Sebastien Giguere. The Conn Smythe goalie of 2003 was back in all of his glory...making one fantabulous (fantastic + fabulous) save after another. Given the STARS' success in scoring often throughout this series, we were off the couch in celebration many times tonight...only to be stunned that JSG made yet another stop. Marty made some great saves as well, finishing with 27 on 31 Anaheim shots. But the offensive breaks certainly went in the Ducks' favor tonight. Anaheim still took way too many needless and over-aggressive penalties...but as they have said from the beginning...they are going to continue that style of play and simply expect to kill off the power plays. They did allow one power play goal in the first...but shut it down the rest of the game.
The game was one of the best in the playoffs thus far...the action was back and forth, the goalies were stellar, the hitting was non-stop, and several goals were scored. Both teams played at an extremely high level...but Anaheim was able to put the puck in the net more. Dallas can easily take solace in the fact that they hung with a desperate Ducks team, that was clicking on all cylinders from the net on out. They should take the positives (and there were many) back to Dallas and have full confidence that they can finish this series. They have earned that opportunity...and they are ready and able to beat the champs! Furthermore, there is one other definite upside -- when the STARS do win game 6 and advance to round 2, it will be in front of me and the home crowd!!! Yes, mark that down as my prediction!