The Dallas Stars defensive struggles: part 2

(Read part one by clicking here.)

There is a silver lining for the Dallas Stars defensemen, however. As the saying goes, “defense wins championships,” so I compared the Dallas Stars defensemen to the Chicago Blackhawks defensemen from last season using the formula below:

Y=[Σ ((GP1TO1)/PT1, (GP2TO2)/PT2,…, (GPnTOn)/PTn)]/n

In simple terms, this analyzes the teams’ defense in terms of each player’s games played (GP), turnover ratio (TO), and points scored (GP). Each defenseman’s games played multiplied by turnover ratio were divided by the amount of points they scored. This was then summed up for the whole team and divided by the amount of defensemen (n).

Although Chicago’s defensemen’s turnover ratio was nearly half as low as Dallas’; when games played and points scored was taken into consideration, they were very similar. The Blackhawks defense scored -48.475, while the Stars defense scored -48.732. Brenden Dillon now is Dallas’ biggest liability on defense, while Alex Goligoski ranks near the average.

Brenden Dillon showing why he is also a physical threat on the ice.

Brenden Dillon showing why he is also a physical threat on the ice.

Although this implies that Brent Seabrook is Chicago’s worst defenseman and Brenden Dillon is Dallas’ worst defenseman (which is completely inaccurate), it does show that players such as Goligoski aren’t the biggest liability to a team after several factors are weighed in.

Regardless of the proximity of scores, the turnover ratio does clearly state that this is an issue for the Dallas Stars. This also doesn’t come just from poor defense; it also comes from lack of open forwards which causes defensemen to aimlessly get rid of the puck.

From this, a key to Dallas’ success will depend on their ability to install a successful breakout strategy, and their ability to successfully move the puck to the forwards in the corners in their offensive zones. These are two areas in which Lindy Ruff and the Dallas Stars will need to improve on next season in order to win those four extra games.


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