With the first month of the 2013-14 completed, the Dallas Stars have came out with 5 wins, 6 losses, and 1 shootout loss. The Dallas Stars, who are still yet to find the perfect chemistry with their players acquired over the season, have managed to get at least 1 point in half of their games thus far.
This record, however, leaves the Dallas Stars in an area that they don’t want to remain in for the long run. They are currently dead last in their division, and a runner-up for the last place position in their conference.
Top Stars thus far
5. Alex Chiasson
Alex Chiasson finished last season with 6 goals, 1 assists in only 7 games played. No one expected the results that he produced in his first 7 NHL games. I personally thought it may have been largely due to luck, and even considered him playing games in the AHL with Dallas’ affiliate team, Texas Stars. Chiasson is unique in that he had a 0.61 points per game average in the AHL regular season. He is now in the NHL with a 0.84 points per game average throughout his first 19 career games, and a 0.58 goals per game average.
Chiasson seems to be the type of player that always sets himself up to be in the right place at the right time. This comes from his game sense, and his ability to analyze the play around him.
4. Brenden Dillon
Brenden Dillon is tied with partner Stephane Robidas for top plus/minus ratio on the Dallas Stars roster with a +6 ratio. Brenden Dillon also leads the Stars’ defensemen in goals, assists, and points, with three goals, and three assists. Aside from his statistical production, he is also playing very consistent. Dillon rarely makes bad reads, or passes. He also frequently is placed in an area that allows him to stop scoring chances for the other team.
As some second year players tend to show less productivity as their rookie season, Dillon has continued exactly where he ended and has improved upon that point. He is currently making a strong argument as to why he should be on the Team Canada Olympic roster for the upcoming Olympics in Sochi.
3. Kari Lehtonen
Kari Lehtonen’s appearance in net shows a different Dallas team than when he is injured. Kari is one of the top goaltenders in the NHL statistically. He holds a 1.66 goals against average, and a 0.945 save percentage. These are much different than the other two goaltenders that have made appearances for the Dallas Stars. Compared with Jack Campbell’s 0.872 save percentage, or Dan Ellis’ 3.60 goals against average, having Kari in net will provide much different final results in games. Unfortunately Kari won’t be able to play every game of the season, so there will need to be a goaltender step up their game to provide relief for Kari Lehtonen.
The Dallas Stars had several issues while Kari was out during his injury, but with Kari back it looks as if they are back on track. Kari will be one of the key reasons for the success of the Dallas Stars as the season progresses and it becomes closer to the playoffs.
2. Jamie Benn
Jamie Benn has completed his first month as the captain of the Dallas Stars. He has brought a lot of consistency and maturity to his game. These are the traits he has honed for the last season, which made him the top candidate for the captaincy after they traded former captain, Brenden Morrow, last season.
Benn has 4 goals and a club leading 8 assists. He is tied with linemate Tyler Seguin with 12 points, also a club leading stat. His success is coming largely from being able to get the puck on net any chance he gets, which is creating scoring opportunities for himself and his linemates. Benn is also playing great two-way hockey as a forward, something that may be related to the lack of defensive success the Stars have seen this year.
1. Tyler Seguin
Seguin is coming off of a summer that consisted of being traded, called out for his immaturity, and being scrutinized by the media for his partying and issues on Twitter. Critics were expected that Seguin would crack under the pressure.
Tyler Seguin came out and demonstrated a high level of maturity, as well as the talent level that made him a first round draft pick in his draft year. He is currently tied with linemate Jamie Benn for the most points within the Dallas Stars organization (5 goals, 7 assists, 12 points).
Antoine Roussel is third in the NHL with 50 penalty minutes. Roussel is averaging over 4 penalty minutes per game, which is actually kind of impressive. The nature of his penalties are why this is impressive. Most of his minutes aren’t coming from unnecessary cheap shots, but are coming through fights. Usually his fighting is in a time where the Stars need a spark, or after a cheap shot on one of Roussel’s teammates. This is something that will give him a lot of respect in the Stars’ locker room.
Check out his fight against Matt Irwin of the San Jose Sharks: Antoine Roussel vs Matt Irwin