Sturm Blog: Staying in the Mix
Just when you think you have a good read on the Dallas Stars, they play another game and totally change your opinion.
Last Sunday, a collapse at home against Phoenix....Playoffs? C'mon
Tuesday, a pretty solid thumping of Minnesota....So you're telling me there is a chance!
Thursday, another road test failed in Columbus....Seriously. They cannot get a road result.
Then, Saturday, they mow through the Coyotes like they are a Cup Contender.
As they say about the weather, we can also say about our Stars. Don't like how they look? Wait a few minutes. It will change.
Consistently inconsistent, the 2009-10 Dallas Stars.
Saturday did demonstrate what we cannot lose focus of: This team has some potential top-end talent that has been born rather recently.
Jamie Benn, 1989. James Neal, 1987. Tom Wandell, 1987. And old man Loui Eriksson, 1985. Toss in blue-line youth in Grossman, Fistric, and Niskanen - '85, '86, and '86 - and you can see that this team cannot lose sight of the big picture while wrestling with the little picture.
Yes, I want to go to the playoffs this year, but not enough to send Mr Benn or Mr Neal packing to grab a big name in return. Benn and Neal are playing so well that no move like that would be considered, but I do want to caution the Fantasy Hockey players on the message boards to slow your roll. Someone actually suggested to me that the Stars deal for Ilya Kovalchuk last week at the price of Benn, Richards, and Ribeiro? Step away from the keyboard. I wouldn't trade Benn straight up for too many guys in this league, let alone adding in my 2 stud centers. Talk about over-paying!
Keep your focus. Once this team can settle its rather large ownership questions, this team will not be far away from competing. Until then, it is up to the guys to fight like they did on Saturday and scratch out as many results as possible.
If a move can be made, Joe Nieuwendyk is watching the radar for the proper strike, but I am not sure there is one that makes a ton of sense right now.
So, watch the big picture. The organization has made the most of its drafts, and Benn in particular is growing up right before our eyes. 14, 18, 21. There is your future. Settle your blue-line and goalie situation, because this team is long on offensive talent for years to come.
All is not lost. Marty Turco appears to be bouncing back to form, just in time for 3 crucial road tests this week. Shoot for 3 points in 3 games before the Olympic break. That will keep you in the mix when things reconvene in March.
I am telling you, in the short term, this team is up against it. But in the long run, this team is not far away at all.
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