Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Dallas Stars Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 4th 2023


In Saturday’s matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning, the homestanding Dallas Stars won by a constellation.

After matching their season high in goals in an 8-1 obliteration of the Lightning, Dallas will visit Tampa on Monday to complete a home-and-home set between the 2020 Stanley Cup Final opponents.

Dallas received goals from its top three lines in the first eight minutes Saturday and piled it on from there.

To no shock at all, the Texas-sized production was staggeringly impressive.

Fourteen of Dallas’ 18 skaters recorded points — only Matt Duchene, Ty Dellandrea, Craig Smith and Joel Hanley were held scoreless. Eight players posted multi-point outings.

The club also found the net on both of its power plays and held the Lightning’s vaunted man-advantage unit to one goal on six attempts.

Dallas is approaching the halfway point of a healthy stretch of eight games in 14 days, which began with Tuesday’s 2-0 win at the Winnipeg Jets. Monday’s is the fourth in the demanding run.

Coach Pete DeBoer liked where his production came from, particularly Jason Robertson and Jamie Benn.

“The right guys got goals tonight,” said DeBoer, whose team is 7-2-2 in the past 11. “Robo had a couple and Benner scored. It was a good night.”

In their other top offensive outing, the Stars won 8-3 at the Minnesota Wild on Nov. 12, with Robertson netting two goals.

The coach warned about the quick turnaround against the Eastern Conference foe.

“You know they’re going to respond in a big way,” DeBoer said. “For us, we’ve got to be mature enough not to assume we can just show up and do the same thing again. They’re going to be much better.”

Not much went right at all for Tampa Bay over 60 minutes.

Furious Lightning coach Jon Cooper called a timeout after the home side’s third goal just 7:39 into the contest.

He later wanted to remove goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy after the sixth Dallas tally, but the No. 1 netminder shook his head no and stayed in for the second period’s remainder.

Cooper called the matinee annihilation a “stinker.”

“Listen, you get a game like this — in 82 games there are going to be some stinkers,” said Cooper after his group dropped to 4-7-2 on the road. “It feels like every shot is going in the net and everyone you take is not. Usually you just burn the tape and turn the page and move on to the next game.

“What makes it tough is the three (games) before where we feel, for sure, could’ve taken two of them, probably took a point, got points out of the last three. We don’t and all of a sudden you’ve lost four in a row.”

Equally frustrating is the lack of offense.

After netting a season-high eight markers on Nov. 24 at the Carolina Hurricanes, the Lightning have just five in four games and have been outscored 19-5.

Only a power-play marker by Victor Hedman, who will play his 1,000th game Monday, scored on the 33 shots against Dallas backstop Jake Oettinger.

Hedman’s fellow defenseman Calvin de Haan added, “It just seems like there’s a black cloud hanging over us.”

–Field Level Media

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