Yuck. I'll bet Dave Tippett wasn't too pleased with that. Apparently NOFX wasn't either since they went to the game in lieu of rehearsing. I apparently picked wisely by going to that show instead of the Stars game. Lackluster efforts like this really need to get ironed out before April.
Player(s) of the game: The Nashville Penalty Kill. This answer might seem like a cop out, and it probably is. No one deserved to be the player of the game because no one was particularly good. The Predators PK deserves some props for holding Dallas to 0/7 and 0/26 on the season. That could be a major storyline come April if these two meet in the first round.
Recap: Dallas went on their first of 7 powerplays 2 minutes into the game. The powerplay really struggled to enter the zone early on. I would've liked to see someone like Steve Ott thrown out there to see if he could establish a forecheck on the powerplay. The games was characterized by sloppiness. Dallas was particularly slow making plays with the puck in their own end, and seemed to not be firing on any of the cylinders that propelled them to torch Chicago. Marty Turco also looked like he wasnt all there. On two of the Predators goals he simply wasn't set or in position. It was a sloppy sloppy game.
The 2nd period was marked with more penalties and more lackluster play. The Stars powerplay actually got some chances though when they went on a 5on3 for a minute, but when you're on a 5 on 3 you need to be taking shots. The Stars seemed reluctant to shoot.
The game finally got interesting in the 3rd period. :48 seconds in David Legwand ripped a goal past the unsettled Turco. 1:43 into the 1st Morrow knocked the piss out of Dan Ellis. This caused Ryan Suter to pick a fight with Morrow that Morrow seemed to not have much interest in. This brought two questions up. The first is what was Morrow thinking? He isn't a dirty player so why did he smash Ellis? The 2nd was brought up by Daryl Reaugh, and it comes up a lot of the times in situations like this: where was the instigator? Ryan Suter was clearly the one wanting the fight, so why didn't he get an instigator?
The 7:40 mark through 8:40 was your hockey game. At 7:53 Loui Eriksson coughed up a puck near the sideboards, and Jordin Tootoo took a weak wrister that sailed right past the once again unsettled Turco. Just 30 seconds later Mike Ribeiro danced into the slot, burned Greg de Vries, and ripped a shot under Dan Ellis' arm. Another 20 seconds passed and Marek Zidlicky sent a great outlet pass up to Jason Arnott who found JP Dumont on the 2 on 1 to really kick Dallas in the throat. Dallas had a small flurry with 2 minutes left, but that was the only segment of the game where they really enforced their will a whole lot. This was only their 2nd game with Brad Richards, but getting used to where he will be isn't an excuse for that effort. Dallas really needs to come out firing on Wednesday vs Phoenix.