Mar 6, 2014; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin (91) celebrates his hat trick with left wing Jamie Benn (14) and center Rich Peverley (17) against the Vancouver Canucks at the American Airlines Center. The Stars won 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Stars - 2013-14 Season Recap

DALLAS STARS

 2013-14 SEASON

The Dallas Stars, after missing the playoffs for 5 straight seasons, to a big step forward this year by qualifying for the post-season.  They battled down to the last weekend of the season, and edged the Phoenix Coyotes for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference, finishing with 91 points. They battled the Anaheim Ducks in the first round but fell short, falling 4 games to 2.

PRE-SEASON EXPECTATION

It was a massive off-season deal that changed the direction of the franchise, as they dealt all-around veteran Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith, Joe Morrow and Matt Fraser to the Boston Bruins for disgruntled center Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley and Ryan Button. Add to that a new coach in Lindy Ruff, whose veteran experience it was hoped would translate to getting the Stars some success. With all the changes, a return to spring hockey was anticipated if not expected.

HIGHS

  • Returning to the post-season for the first time in 6 seasons.
  • Seguin and captain Jamie Benn each finished in the top 10 in league scoring
  • Rookie Valeri Nichushkin made an immediate impact as an 18 year old, showing some promise to being a power forward that will be a nice fit on the Stars top line in the future.

LOWS

  • Scary incident for Peverley, collapsing on the bench with a cardiac incident, during a game in March against the Blue Jackets.  Thankfully he was successfully treated, although he missed the rest of the season and his career is in doubt.
  • Sergei Gonchar‘s 22 points and -12 rating had to be a disappointment after signing a 2 year, $10M deal in the off-season to shore up the Stars blue line.

PROGNOSIS FOR NEXT SEASON

It was a learning experience for a lot of Stars, making their first foray into the post-season.  The maturation of Seguin and his chemistry with Benn can only mean good things going forward.  The Western Conference will only get better, and tougher, but the Dallas Stars are putting the pieces in place to become a player on a consistent basis.   

 

5 QUESTIONS WITH BLACKOUT DALLAS

 

I got the chance to ask Josh Clark, Staff Writer for Blackoutdallas.com, a few questions about the Stars’ season past and also the future.  Here are his responses:

 

1.   What was the biggest surprise for your team?
Their constant push and relentlessness. No matter what got in their way (i.e. Robidas with the broken leg, the 1-8-1 start to January and falling 10 pts behind 8th place, the Peverley incident and fighting through it to beat STL the next night, making the playoffs and taking the best team in the West to 6 games). They continued to push and surprised everyone with the postseason berth.
2. What was the biggest disappointment for your team?
Defense. It was lousy and overall unstructured. They spent too much time in their own zone and when they were off, boy were they way way off. They’re power play was also horrific and just downright disappointing.
3. What is the biggest need going forward?
A powerhouse defenseman. Try to pick up a free agent big man and someone that can structure and lead the squad. Maybe Letang. Need someone to hold the squad up and help them flow better.
4. Who was your team’s MVP this season?
Close one, but Jamie Benn. Consistent in regular season like Seguin, but advantage would be that he was consistent in the playoffs as well. All while carrying the team as a first year captain. A lot was expected of him and he delivered perfectly.
5. What #hashtag would you use to describe your team’s season or state of the team?
#nextyear

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Tags: Jamie Benn Lindy Ruff Rich Peverley Sergei Gonchar Stars Tyler Seguin

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