No April Fools here. The Dallas Stars have not played well this season and find themselves out of the Stanley Cup playoffs for the second time in four seasons. After a 109 point 2016-16 season, the Stars have mustered just a measly 73 points in the standings this season.
The Stars can attribute their lack of success this season to goal-tending and road play. Despite allocating $10.4 million to their two net-minders, Dallas has allowed the fourth most goals in the league or 3.14 per game. They currently have a -37 goal differential and a .895 team save percentage.
Dallas has won just 11 of 39 games on the road and are currently in the midst of a five-game road trip. They are fresh off a 2-0 loss in Boston that would have helped the Hurricanes quest for a playoff spot.
The lack of goal scoring in Boston is a reflection of a season-long trend in Dallas that has plagued the team. The team has not received much secondary scoring and has heavily relied on Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin. Seguin has once again had a great season for the Stars as he leads the team with 70 points (25 goals, 45 assists).
Special teams have also been a concern for the Stars. The team ranks last in the NHL on the penalty kill at 73.9 percent. They rank 21st on the power play at 17.9 percent. The Hurricanes are right behind Dallas at 17.8 percent on the power play.
It hasn’t been all grim for Dallas despite their alarming statistics. John Klingberg, 24, has proven to be the top defenseman the team has been looking for. In his third season, Klingberg has recorded 45 points and has set a career high in goals with 12. Esa Lindell has also been a bright spot on Dallas’ back end. The rookie defenseman has 14 points (six goals, eight assists), 112 blocked shots and 88 hits in 68 games.
The Stars are 4-1-0 in their last five games in Raleigh and will try to end the Hurricanes 13-game point streak tonight.