The Dallas Stars have won both and off the ice after last night while knocking off the Calgary Flames and taking a 2-1 series lead.
A fan behind the bench captured the attention of every straight-male watching. Nothing is known about the woman showing her voluptuous cleavage outside of everyone was rooting for her.
The Dallas Morning News
In the laser-spewing, light-flashing house on Victory Avenue, the most noticeable change in the Stars-Flames first-round series was the location.In an eventual 4-2 Stars win in Game 3 on Saturday night — and win that gave Dallas a 2-1 series lead — the game unfolded like a checklist.
The previously unlikely but somehow common John Klingberg fight? Check. Matthew Tkachuk being an agitator for the Flames? Check. Michael Raffl morphing into a playoff pest during the first round? Jake Oettinger and Jacob Markstrom matching each other from 200 feet away? Check. Even the power plays remained dull.
The series shifted 1,882 miles southeast and warmed up 30 degrees. The red towels in Calgary were replaced by white ones at the American Airlines Center. Instead of flames being shot towards the ceiling, the electric star hanging above the benches spit out smoke.
But the underlying hate and general defensive quality traveled south.
Joe Pavelski made sure to give his team the series lead, scoring the game-winning goal with 9:55 left in the third period, in addition to tying the game midway through the second period. Of the Stars’ six goals this series, Pavelski has three of them.
Pavelski’s winner was on the power play, following up a Vladislav Namestnikov shot to beat Markstrom.
Radek Faksa also scored for the Stars, and Miro Heiskanen had two assists. Oettinger followed up his first career postseason shutout by making 39 saves, including a massive one on Johnny Gaudreau with 3 1/2 minutes left in the third period. Roope Hintz scored an empty-net goal in the final seconds.
It is the first series lead for the Stars, who lost Game 1 but have beat the Flames twice in a row.
Entering Saturday night, the chatter around the hockey world was about the low-scoring nature of the Stars-Flames series. There were only three goals overall, and only one of them was a 5-on-5 goal. One was an empty-net goal; the other, a power play goal.
Without an uptick in scoring, it would be on pace to be the lowest-scoring playoff series in the modern era. Saturday provided that.
For the first time this series, a team scored three goals. For the first time, both teams scored goals in the same game.
Faksa opened the scoring 8:21 into the first period, winning a faceoff and beelining to the front of the net to tip Esa Lindell’s shot. It was Faksa’s first playoff goal since Game 4 of the 2020 second round against Colorado. Faksa nearly added another in the first period with a wraparound goal.
Trevor Lewis tied the game at 1 with 6:15 left in the first period, putting home a rebound by Milan Lucic. The Stars challenged the goal for goaltender interference as Lucic bumped Oettinger as he passed by the crease. But the goal was upheld, and the league had no further explanation for the ruling beside this one sentence.
“Video review confirmed no goaltender interference infractions occurred prior to Trevor Lewis’ goal,” the NHL ruled.
Elias Lindholm scored his second goal of the series early in the second period, taking advantage of a Johnny Gaudreau feed and a Stars turnover in their own zone. Lindholm, the Flames’ top-line center, was consistently part of the Calgary attack, often finding himself available in the slot.
Pavelski’s first goal was on a Heiskanen rebound, and came seconds after Markstrom robbed Heiskanen with a spinning, old school, two-pad attempt that glanced off his glove. Pavelski ensured Markstrom’s theft was moot.
Saturday was the Stars’ first home playoff game in three years and two days, when the Stars lost Game 6 of the second round to St. Louis. The Stars’ 2020 playoff run took place in the Edmonton bubble. Dallas did not qualify for the postseason in 2021.
Home postseason games are a boon for the franchise financially. They carry a revved up atmosphere inside the American Airlines Center. They help build a future fanbase.
But, first and foremost, they provide the Stars an opportunity to take control of the series against the Flames.
Thanks to Pavelski, the Stars didn’t miss their chance.
Out in the AHL: AHL affiliate Texas was eliminated from the playoffs on Friday night with a 1-0 overtime loss in Rockford. Texas lost both games of the best-of-three first-round series, and both games were in Rockford.
At the NHL level, the result should result in many of the team’s NHL-contracted players being called up to Dallas as black aces. Black aces are reinforcements that practice with the team, but are not typically counted on to play unless injuries mount.
Ty Dellandrea, Riley Tufte and Riley Damiani could be among the notable names that get called up.
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