Analysis

NHL Power Rankings: Eastern Conference Taking Control

By Colin Likas
Nov 21, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; The New York Rangers celebrate an empty net goal by center Derek Stepan (middle) against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG Paints Arena. The Rangers won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 21, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; The New York Rangers celebrate an empty net goal by center Derek Stepan (middle) against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG Paints Arena. The Rangers won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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Nov 21, 2016; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Stars goalie Antti Niemi (31) makes a save on a Minnesota Wild shot during the third period at the American Airlines Center. The Stars defeat the Wild 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 21, 2016; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Stars goalie Antti Niemi (31) makes a save on a Minnesota Wild shot during the third period at the American Airlines Center. The Stars defeat the Wild 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 18: Dallas Stars

Previous: 19th

Season record: 8-7-5

Is Dallas going the route of some previous Florida Panthers teams, that have skated into the playoffs on a ton of overtime points?

That could be the best option for the Stars if their offense continues to be iffy and their goaltending continues to be … what it is.

The former of those two issues is more likely to change. Tyler Seguin is doing better than a point per game (22 in 20), while most everyone else is underperforming. No one has reached 10 goals yet, which is surprising for a mostly unchanged group that went off while shooting the puck last season.

Early injuries to the likes of Jason Spezza, Patrick Sharp and Jiri Hudler also haven’t helped. But this all goes back to goaltending for the Stars, as they did nothing to improve on the duo of Antti Niemi (.903/3.17) and Kari Lehtonen (.889/3.31) in the offseason.

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