After two weeks of thrilling play, Round 1 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs is in the books. On Sunday night, the Dallas Stars were the last team to punch their ticket to the second round by defeating the Vegas Golden Knights 2-1 at home in Game 7 of their series. Dallas will move on to tangle with the Colorado Avalanche. Moreover, with Vegas’ elimination, there will officially not be a repeat champion in 2023-24.

Timely Dallas Goals, Vegas Woes

Given the narrow 2-1 final score, one can assume that the match’s outcome could have differed. They’d be quite right, more so than they probably imagine. Seconds before the hosts opened the scoring in the first period, the Golden Knights ringed the puck off the post of a gaping Dallas net. Moments later, the Stars applied pressure in Vegas’ zone, producing a turnover that allowed Dallas sensation Wyatt Johnston to zip a wrist shot by Adin Hill. 

Wyatt Johnston, Dallas Stars (a href=httpswww.instagram.comjmstarr_Jess StarraThe Hockey Writers)

In the second period, Jack Eichel made a move to the left of Jake Oettinger and had a chance at an open net but backhanded his shot into the side netting. To their credit, Vegas did level the terms via a Brett Howden goal. 

Related: Dallas Stars’ Logan Stankoven Has Unlimited Potential

The third period largely belonged to the Stars, and they made that known very early, with Radek Faksa backhanding a shot from the left circle into the top corner at 0:44. Rather than withstand a push from the Golden Knights, the Stars continued to press, looking for an insurance marker. With time winding down, Vegas began to show some desperation, but the host displayed excellent, aggressive defense, never allowing their rivals to achieve great scoring opportunities. Oettinger made 22 saves in the win. 

Fun fact: Stars head coach Peter DeBoer is a perfect 8-0 in Stanley Cup Playoff Game 7s.

For the Golden Knights, their offseason begins. For the Stars, Round 2 awaits, as does a well-rested, supremely talented Avalanche squad. 


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