I’m just going to get right into it. The Dallas Stars are the team to watch this year. After quite a few seasons of simply unimpressive hockey, the 2015-16 Stars are more than up to the challenge; and they have the numbers to speak for it. A 19-5-0 start to the season for the Stars? Are you kidding me? Not only have they broken the franchise record as the Stars, but also they have broken the record of the previous Minnesota North Stars.
In my opinion, is this a playoff team? Absolutely. Are the Stars a serious candidate for the Stanley cup? Without a doubt. But don’t take it from me, let the numbers speak for themselves. Jamie Benn alone has 34 points in 24 games. You take that and add it to Tyler Seguin, one of the league’s most systematic goal scorers, that is pretty much a playoff team in and of itself. I mean the guy also is only one point behind Jamie Benn. When your two top offensive players are putting up about 70 points in under 30 games, you know you’ve got a good team.
Now, Benn and Seguin are tallying incredible numbers this year and are contributing a ridiculous amount to their team, but two players do not singlehandedly get a team to first in their conference and second in the NHL. Especially seeing how the Canadiens have been absolutely unparalleled this season. If you disagree with me on my opinions of the Stars this season, look at the roster.
It is a complete given that deep teams win the Stanley Cup, the Stars are hands down the deepest team in the NHL this season. Besides the fact that they have two superstars performing well beyond Stanley Cup levels, the Dallas Stars have gathered a team this season that is not to be trifled with. First of all, they acquired Jason Spezza who is without question the best second line center in hockey today, and I will die by that. Now add Sharp, Eaves, Fiddler, Hemsky, and Nichushkin to that and that is a playoff offense.
The Stars Defense is no joke either. Every team has at least one or two star defensemen. This team has, on a bad day, four solid defensemen. Jordie Benn, Jason Demers, Alex Goligoski, and Johnny Oduya. Put some very solid goaltending behind that such as, say I don’t know, Antti Niemi and Kari Lehtonen and you’ve got yourself a team to work with.
I think this is the team to watch this year and a team with a very serious chance of winning the Stanley Cup. I’d love to see the Pens with a cup this year and there is a lot of hockey left to play, but if I had to make a pick right now, I’d have to go with the Stars.