Stars aiming higher after disappointing finish to season

Posted Tuesday, Apr. 29, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

When the Dallas Stars organization was overhauled prior to this season, bringing in a new general manager, a new head coach and new young talent on the ice, no one knew what this team could accomplish in its first year.

So even after the Stars gave up two goals in the last 2 minutes of regulation in Game 6 and then another in the first minutes of overtime to end their season against Anaheim in the first-round of the Stanley Cup playoffs Sunday night, Dallas fans recognized something special had happened. An initially disappointed crowd gave the team a standing ovation as it left the ice.

The team accomplished its mission. It brought playoff hockey back to Dallas.

However, the locker room after that Game 6 loss did not look like a team content with achieving that season-long goal of making the playoffs.

It knew it could have won that series despite being the eighth and final seed in the Western Conference.

“We took way too many penalties, and we shot ourselves in the foot,” veteran forward Vernon Fiddler said. “I don’t think Anaheim beat us. We beat ourselves more than anything.”

The next goal will be to accomplish more next season, whether that be a higher seed or a longer playoff run.

But if there is a theme for this off-season, coach Lindy Ruff said, it carries a much more tempered tone.

“I think we have a lot of work to do,” Ruff said. “We set a platform for ourselves of where we can be. We were an eighth-place seed. There’s a lot of room to grow.”

Much of that growth will be mental, Ruff said.

This year’s team was easily one of Ruff’s favorites to coach, he said, because it never gave up or gave less than its best in practice and in games. But Ruff knows next season will have the same challenges and more.

“This is one of the best teams I’ve coached,” he said. “This was a tough but fun year as a coach. These guys brought it every night, but you can’t think that it’s going to happen again. We have to use these next three weeks to decompress and then use the next three months to become a better team.”

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?

Wednesday, November 26Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, November 26Full Scoreboard
Portland 11/26 7:00 PM ET
Charlotte TV: CSN-NW, SPSO
Washington 11/26 7:00 PM ET
Cleveland TV: CSN-DC, FSN-OH
Golden State 11/26 7:00 PM ET
Orlando TV: CSN-BA, FSN-FL
Brooklyn 11/26 7:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: YES, CSN-PHI
Toronto 11/26 7:30 PM ET
Atlanta TV: SN 360, SPSO
New York 11/26 7:30 PM ET
LA Clippers 11/26 7:30 PM ET
Sacramento 11/26 8:00 PM ET
Milwaukee 11/26 8:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FSN-WI, FSN-N+
Utah 11/26 8:00 PM ET
Oklahoma City TV: FSN-OK
Indiana 11/26 8:30 PM ET
San Antonio TV: FSN-IN, FSN-SW
Denver 11/26 9:00 PM ET
Phoenix TV: Altitude2, FSN-AZ
Memphis 11/26 10:30 PM ET
Full Scoreboard
Week 13Full Scoreboard
Chicago 12:30 PM ET
Detroit TV: CBS
Philadelphia 4:30 PM ET
Dallas TV: FOX
Seattle 8:30 PM ET
San Francisco TV: NBC
San Diego 1:00 PM ET
Baltimore TV: CBS
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: CBS
Tennessee 1:00 PM ET
Houston TV: CBS
Washington 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: FOX
NY Giants 1:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: FOX
Carolina 1:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FOX
New Orleans 1:00 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: FOX
Oakland 1:00 PM ET
St. Louis TV: CBS
Cincinnati 1:00 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: CBS
Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Atlanta TV: FOX
New England 4:25 PM ET
Green Bay TV: CBS
Denver 8:30 PM ET
Kansas City TV: NBC
Miami 8:30 PM ET
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, November 26Full Scoreboard
Washington 11/26 7:00 PM ET
NY Islanders TV: CSN-DC+, MSG+
Winnipeg 11/26 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: SN1, MSG-BUF
Philadelphia 11/26 7:30 PM ET
NY Rangers 11/26 7:30 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: MSG 2, SUN
Carolina 11/26 7:30 PM ET
Toronto 11/26 7:30 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: TVA Sports, SN, ROOT-PIT
Los Angeles 11/26 8:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FSN-W, FSN-N
Chicago 11/26 9:00 PM ET
Colorado TV: TVA 2, CSN-CH, Altitude
Calgary 11/26 10:30 PM ET
San Jose TV: SN-W, CSN-CA
Full Scoreboard