Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Gameday Preview: Stars at Oklahoma City Barons, Game 4

Texas Stars
43-22-5-6, 97 pts
#1 Western Conference
atOklahoma City Barons
40-25-2-9, 91 pts
#5 Western Conference
OKC leads 2-1

May 15th at 7:00 PM
Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK

The Texas Stars are not where they want to be. They are down 2-1 in their series with the Barons and are looking at two more games in OKC ahead of them on consecutive nights. They came out strong but ultimately ended up short on Monday. What now?

If it wasn't obvious enough in Games 1 and 2, Game 3 made it very clear that Texas is lacking in offensive production compared to a team like OKC. They have high quality scorers but they are getting shutdown. After scoring two goals in the Milwaukee series, Matt Fraser has just five shots in three games and no points. Leading point scorer in the regular season Colton Sceviour is shooting a lot more (19 shots in three games) but only has an assist to show for it. Morin has six shots but no points. That line has to activate if the Stars want to advance.

Or maybe the Glennie line needs to activate. Will it still be 'his' line tonight though? Desjardins shifted Petersen in at the center spot between Ritchie and Smith in the third period Monday. That line has combined for a goal and an assist in the playoffs total. Smith had been averaging the best points pace in franchise history during the regular season. Is it time for a shakeup to change something in his game? It seems like he's getting chances but isn't getting finish. How do you fix that?

Finally on defense, does someone get switched out tonight? Jordie Benn had two bad penalties that led to OKC goals in the second period. He was on the ice for the Arcobello even-strength goal as well. Do you consider sitting him and bringing in Commodore to play opposite Oleksiak?

There are a lot of decisions for Desjardins to consider here.

OKC shouldn't see their attendance improve much as the Thunder host a home game tonight against the Grizzlies.

Stars injury/call up report:
Nemeth (injury)

Website: okcbarons.com
Blog (unofficial): NewsOK's Barons Hockey
Twitter: @OKCBaronsHockey

6 comments:

  1. I think sitting Benn would be a good thing to do. Sitting a guy like Benn who is a vet and someone considered a top Dallas prospect (judging by his time there this year) might send a message to all corners of the team. Additionally Benn has never been one to factor in on the ability for the team to win. I also hope Nill has a talk with them.

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    Replies
    1. Desjardins is not shy about using ice time as a tool. He hasn't been all year.

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  2. I was disappointed to see Morrow and Commodore scratched on Monday. Maybe it's time to sit Benn and bring in someone hungrier. My gut feeling, though, is that there's nothing that's going to save this team and that they'll be done this week.

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    Replies
    1. Er, Wrenn, not Morrow. Still asleep.

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    2. On the positive side: As we sit now we are down 1-2 so it's not a very steep hill to climb. Additionally they have two consecutive games in OKC which historicly in sports winning three straight is adnormally tough and works against OKC. I still think Texas is a better team. Texas is a good road team and I would be seriously suprised if they don't get at least one in OKC. Danis has continued to play well against Texas but it is above his normal level and in a 7 game series can his luck hold out?

      On the negative: I'm not convinced the players who spent time in Dallas have their heads in the playoffs. We have to much offensive ability to be doing as bad as we are without an excuss. Oleksiak needs to beat the hell out of someone, sick of seeing him take shots and responding with a push. Texas is a bad home team, I have no confidence that if they need two home wins they will get them.

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  3. This is one night where I would rather listen than watch. (To afraid).

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