After the Stars upset the Predators in six games in last year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, the rivalry between Dallas and Nashville has never been stronger. It has been a little over two weeks since the Stars defeated the Preds 4-1, so Nashville came in with a lot to prove.
The game started out electric with both teams flying around the ice. A little before the three minute mark, Preds defenseman Ryan Ellis took a shot from the blue line, and Corey Perry caught him on the jaw with his elbow, knocking him out of the game. Perry was given a five minute major penalty for elbowing and a game misconduct.
Blake Comeau went to clear the puck a couple minutes into the penalty kill and received a delay of game call, to give Nashville a 5 on 3 power play for two minutes. Nashville was able to take advantage of the penalty, as Duchene scored after a beautiful cross ice pass from Filip Forsberg. Roman Josi received the second assist on the goal.
With less than a minute left on the power play Nashville was able to score again, as Matt Duchene made a slick pass to Preds d-man Donte Fabbro, for his second point of the power play.
Dallas had an opportunity to get one back, as Denis Gurianov went on a breakaway and was taken down by Matt Irwin, resulting in a penalty shot. However, he was unable to convert on the opportunity.
Austin Watson absolutely obliterated Blake Comeau, for his second big hit of the game, knocking Comeau out of the game after he smacked his head hard on the ice.
Bishop would make a few more incredible saves to keep the score at 2-0 at the end of the period.
The second period began much more tame than the start of the game. There wasn’t much action until a little before the halfway point in the period, when Tyler Seguin received a penalty for boarding Austin Watson from behind.
Ben Bishop was able to make a really nice couple of saves to prevent the Preds power play from scoring. Seguin came out of the box and created a breakaway, but Pekka Rinne stood tall in net, not allowing the Stars to score.
Nashville’s captain Roman Josi received a cross checking penalty with 3:16 left in the period. Dallas was able to score on a goal by Blake Comeau after Jason Dickinson wrapped the puck around the net and centered it in front.
Shortly thereafter, Faksa and Ekholm collided awkwardly into the boards, resulting in a stoppage of play with 53 seconds left. Blake Comeau applied pressure to Blackwell resulting in a delay of game penalty as he chipped the puck over the boards.
Dallas would not score before the conclusion of the period, so the score remained 2-1 in favor of Nashville.
Dallas came out for blood at the start of the period on the power play. After a faceoff win by Roope Hintz, John Klingberg took a wrist shot from the point that was tipped in by Mattias Janmark to tie the game.
Shortly thereafter, Tyler Seguin came in for another breakaway and hit the post on a shot. Dallas continued applying pressure, but Rinne made some big saves and kept the score tied at two a piece. The Stars managed seven shots to the Preds zero over the first 170 seconds of the third. Nashvillle took their timeout to try and settle things down.
Ryan Johanson received a penalty less than a minute after the timeout, to give Dallas another powerplay opportunity.
Alexander Radulov absolutely teed up a one timer after a perfect pass from John Klingberg. Jamie Benn made the original pass to Klingberg, to get the second assist.
Less than a minute after, Andrej Sekera would come in for a rebound on a Mattias Janmark shot, that bounced around in Radek Faksa’s feet, to give the Stars a 4-2 lead.
There were 85,630 people in attendance of the 2020 Winter Classic, which proved to be nothing short of exhilarating. Both coaches said post game that from a hockey fan’s perspective, they couldn’t have hoped for a better game.
In a bit of a candid moment with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, he let the media know that the ice actually melted over the weekend, and had the game been over the weekend, it would have needed to be cancelled.
The Stars have came from behind in the third period their last two games. Dallas has scored a total of seven goals in third periods over their last two game. Coach Rick Bowness said after the game that even though they came from behind the last two games, he thought they played a good game both games, and it was just a matter of time until the goals started coming.
Three Stars of the Game
- Blake Comeau
- John Klingberg
- Matt Duchene
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