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Arlington, TX • United States • 35 Years Old • Male
I thought this was pretty funny and had to share. From the oh-so-obvious category --- I'm watching the Sabres/Oilers while I type this and after Buffalo scores their NINTH goal, one of the Oilers' announcers proclaims, "I said the lead was commanding but it may be insurmountable at this point." Almost as if it is really a question! LOL!

The Stars will take the win and a most needed 2 points, but more than anything they will happily welcome back the REAL Marty Turco! Like Ron Burgundy reading from the teleprompter, "I'm Marty Turco?" Yes, it appears that #35 has regained some of his swagger. He faced 25 shots tonight, 13 in the 3rd period, and turned away each of them. Some saves were more stellar than others, and a few were more dazzling than those! Though similar to the game before the break against the Florida, Atlanta showed less effort than even the defenseman in the All-Star game. The difference, however, was the quality of shots Marty faced from the Thrashers. Many were high quality scoring chances including a couple from super-sniper Ilya Kovalchuk. As the clocked ticked down in the 3rd, Turco was forced to make two final saves, and both were of the larcenous variety. In fact, he made the very last save with his shoulder, using said shoulder as a baseball bat! The win gave him 20 on the year and the shutout was the 35th of his career. From a historical standpoint, Marty's 35 shutouts place him 38th on the all-time, regular season, career shutout list. Of active goalies, only Khabibulin, Luongo, Nabakov, Joseph, and Brodeur have more ... and Kolzig and Lalime are tied with him.

Marty Turco and the Stars are 4-1-2 in their last 7 games, with 2 shutouts. Those happen to be the only shutouts of the season. If they had kept their feet on the accelerator, their record could well be 7-0-0 in the last 7, and really should be. The Stars always seem to lose aggressiveness in games they are leading. All too often they start playing prevent defense which, in the new NHL, means preventing your team from winning. It wasn't so much the case tonight, though they did get outshot 13-8 in the 3rd. But on a night when the goaltending was top-notch brilliant (Lehtonen made some incredible saves as well), Marty was there to keep the slate clean. Why is it that no matter who the Stars play they always make the opposing goalie look like a superstar? They should have scored 8 goals tonight and at least 6 against the Panthers last week, and the same can be said on many other nights. Every game it seems the Stars are facing a sure-fire, first-ballot, Hall-of-Famer!

Thankfully for Dallas, Kovalchuk was clearly tired from the festivities in Montreal ... he had some good opps but turned the puck over a ton. The Stars finished with 33 shots and goals from Jere Lehtinen (3) and Steve Ott (6). Otter also had an assist, giving him a 2-point night along with Mike Ribeiro, who's 2 assists give him 30 helpers on the year and the team lead in points with 41. Chris Conner suited up in place of Mark Parrish. I do not believe Parrish is hurt so I'm assuming Tip is sending the message that Mark's effort is simply not good enough. Conner brings some life to the game with his incredible speed, and he also seems to click well with Mikey Mo. Our young defense looked pretty good tonight, as did Sydor. Maybe he needed the break!

The next few games should be a real picture of what this team is up for. Detroit and Columbus on the road and then Calgary at home, equals two definite Cup contenders and Hitch's Jedi mind tricks. Though Dallas has beaten Detroit twice already, the Joe is seemingly their Achilles hill. Furthermore, the Wings lost to the Blue Jackets tonight, without Datsyuk and Lidstrom, and are not in the most jovial of moods. They will most likely come out looking to score 17. Razor's encouragement was to "pretend like they are not there! Put blinders on like the horses have." Doing so could bring about 2 different outcomes ... either the Stars win the game narrowly or the Red Wings actually do score 17! Blinders or not, Dallas MUST continue to play like they have the last several games. One of the 4 wins in the last 7 games includes 2 points against Detroit. Marty must be sharp, special teams must be solid, and their shots must find the back of the net.

Playoff watch (yes, it started tonight!):

36 games left (1-0-0)
+2 points = 49
+0 points given away = 0
Currently 11th seed (3 points out of 7th and 5 points out of 5th)
Max of 4 games in hand

Trade Deadline Activity:



Filed Under:   Eklund   NHL   Playoffs   Thrashers   Turco   Stars  
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