When the Stars look back on what will likely be a missed playoff spot, it might be this night that they point to. Before the night they probably counted on the Penguins doing them a favor and perhaps sneak a point or two off a still sleepy Hawks team. The Hawks weren’t all that sleepy, the Pens probably were, and the Hawks walked away with two points and the Starts with a three-point gap to the last wild card.
It’s still kind of startling how the Hawks can exert just enough to not only swing a game but pretty much dominate it. The shot-board says 42-27, and there were definitely stretches where the Hawks pinned the Stars in. But this wasn’t an all-out assault we’ve seen before. It was more pure control, not letting anything get out of the bottle (except for Garbutt’s two goals). Containment rather that domination. It’s still quite effective, and doesn’t take everything out of the legs.
So let’s get to it.