The Dallas Stars announced their return to the Stanley Cup Playoffs (after a three year absence) by kicking in the doors of Nashville's Bridgestone Arena, one of the most intimidating atmosphere's in the NHL, and handing the Nashville Predators a 3-2 loss in Game One. How important was the Game One win? The Stars are 12-5 when they win the first playoff game in a series, and they are 0-11 when they lose. Also, the Preds are 0-8 in Series when they lose the first game. Also, Also, by winning the first game in Nashville, the Stars have stolen away home ice advantage. Let's not bury the lead though, as everyone is talking about the play of 19-year old Stars rookie defensive phenom, Miro Heiskanen, who scored TWO goals on the night, joining Phil Housley and Glenn Wesley as the third teenage defenseman in NHL history to score two goals in a postseason game.
Take a look at his first goal below on the power play and take note of the sick hesitation before releasing his shot, tying the game 1-1
Then, with tensions running high, and the game tied at 1-1 in the third period, Heiskanen found a way to get his shot through, all the way to the back of the net...
The lead seemed to bolster the Stars as they took over, dominating play, and thanks to some tenacious work by the Captain Jamie Benn behind the net, and some quick reflexes from Stars trade-deadline-pickup Mats Zuccarello, the Stars would extend their lead.
Of course, Stars fans knew the Nashville Predators wouldn't roll over. All-Star defenseman PK Subban with an incredible individual effort cut the Stars lead in half
Then it was up to the Stars defense, especially goalie Ben Bishop, to shut it down and shut it down they did! Here's the scene from the Dallas Stars official watching party at Texas Live! including my announcement of STARS WIN!!!
After the game, there goes my Miro, as "the kid" was the recipient of the Player Of The Game Cowboy Hat
Now keep in mind, it's not the first team to win 1 game, it's the first to win 4 (out of 7). This series is a long way from over, but you can't deny it certainly got off on the right foot. Stars fans deserve to enjoy this win, at least until Saturday at 5pm when the ice-cream headache starts all over again. Be sure to bookmark my blog for updates after every Stars playoff game this post-season. GO STARS!!