Nauseated by the Mavs last night, I turned on the Dallas Stars. And what did I see?
A team maybe saving its season.
The Stars have had their share of bad-luck bounces lately. But last night in Anaheim they saved a gasp of their season with two controversial calls that disallowed goals by the Ducks in a crucial 4-3 win.
The Stars, who had dropped eight of nine to tumble out of the top eight in the Western Conference, got two goals from Mike Ribeiro to take a seemingly comfy 4-2 lead.
The Ducks got within one and then -- twice in the final two minutes -- appeared to have scored to tie it.
The Ducks thought they scored on Teemu Selanne's goal, but Duck Saku Koivu clearly interfered with goalie Kari Lehtonen as a shot was being taken. Frustrating for Anaheim, but the bump of Lehtonen in the crease clearly shoved him off balance and helped to allow the goal.
Good call. No doubt.
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The second Dallas break? Hmm.
With Anaheim pulling its goalie, on a penalty and enjoying a two-man advantage, the Ducks applied massive pressure in Dallas' zone. The Ducks' Corey Perry found the puck in his hand -- literally -- outside the crease. Amidst serious traffic, he attempted to drop the puck and take a shot. To me, the puck was jostled via stick and skate before accidentally winding up on the tape of Bobby Ryan, who chipped a shot over Lehtonen for 4-4 with 1:47 remaining.
The officials, however, ruled Perry's assist was intentional hand pass. Whew.
In a related story: Call it even?