The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Dallas Stars eyeing postseason berth, longterm success with youth

Stars+defenseman+Brenden+Dillon+%284%29+fights+for+possession+during+the+Stars+2-1+win+over+the+Sharks+on+April+13.
Courtesy of AP
Stars defenseman Brenden Dillon (4) fights for possession during the Stars 2-1 win over the Sharks on April 13.

Stars defenseman Brenden Dillon (4) fights for possession during the Stars 2-1 win over the Sharks on April 13. (Courtesy of AP)

With six games left in the 2012-13 NHL season, the Dallas Stars sit only one game out of a playoff spot. A position that was almost inconceivable last week after the Stars traded away their captain, their leading scorer and their second line center, but here they are. With less than two weeks until the playoffs start, the Dallas Stars are almost in complete control of their postseason aspirations.

Until Monday night’s less than stellar effort against the team with the league’s best record, the Chicago Blackhawks, the Stars had won five in a row. That is the Stars’ longest winning streak of the year.

Not only were the Stars beating teams ahead of them in the standings, they were winning without their best player. Goalie Kari Lehtonen came out of the April 9th game against the Los Angeles Kings with a groin injury, and remains day-to-day. He is expected to be ready to go Thursday, when the Stars host the Vancouver Canucks.

In his absence, back-up goalie Richard Bachman has been solid, posting a 3-1 record. His performance in net was good enough to be named one of the NHL’s Three Stars of the Week.

The Stars are currently in 10th place in the Western Conference, but only one game from eighth and two games from seventh. The Stars last six games are against Vancouver (4/18), in St. Louis (4/19), in Los Angeles (4/21), in San Jose (4/23), versus Columbus (4/25) and finally versus Detroit (4/27).

What do all six of those teams have in common? They’re all ahead of the Stars in the standing; Columbus is ninth, Detroit is eighth and St. Louis is seventh. The Stars will have jump at least two of those three teams to make the postseason. It’s a tough road, but if the Stars win, they’ll be in by their own doing.

The Stars biggest surprise in the recent weeks has been the sudden rise of rookie Alex Chiasson. The 22-year-old is playing his first full year of pro hockey after playing at Boston University for three years.

Since playing most of the year with the Stars’ AHL affiliate in Austin, the Montreal native made his NHL debut on April 3rd in Anaheim, where he registered two shots and three hits. Ever since then, Chiasson has been on fire, racking up six goals and an assist in his first seven NHL games.

Though it is expected he’ll cool down, he is currently shooting an unsustainable 46%, he is expected to contribute to the offense from here on out.

Chiasson joins a group of rookies and young players that now make up the core of the Dallas Stars. So even if the team misses out on the postseason this year, the Stars future looks full of opportunities to reclaim the Stanley Cup.

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