With all of the offensive storylines heading into Tuesday night, the Dallas Stars and Toronto Maple Leafs game came down to the performance of one player: Leafs goaltender Matt Murray.
Murray stopped all 44 Dallas shots, recording his first shutout of the season and securing a 4-0 win for his Leafs. It was the first time the Stars were shut out this season.
“I loved our start to the game. I thought we had a handful of Grade-A chances early in that first period to get out in front of the game,” Stars Head Coach Pete DeBoer said. “You have to give our goalie credit, he made some saves.”
The Stars threw everything they had at Murray and the Leafs.
They went 0-7 on the power play, including 90 seconds of 5-on-3 and a double minor for high sticking. It seemed that the Leafs continued to give Dallas a chance to get back into the game, but the Stars could not convert. Unofficially, Dallas racked up 93 shot attempts in the process.
But Toronto blocked 27 shots and Murray cleaned up the rest, leaving Dallas with a goose egg on the scoreboard at the end of the night.
“That probably speaks a little bit to our execution,” DeBoer said of Toronto’s blocked shots. “They blocked shots and their goalie played really well, but a little bit is execution on us, maybe holding it an extra second. And then all of the sudden, the lanes not available anymore.”
“When we got the power plays in the second period and had a chance to claw back into the game, it was either big save or an execution issue with us. Just off a little bit and that’s what happened.”
With the shutout loss, comes the end to Jason Robertson’s lengthy point streak. The streak ends at 18 games, a Dallas Stars record, and just two games shy of the franchise record. Robertson still leads the NHL with 23 goals.
Toronto’s Mitch Marner extended his point streak to 19 games with an assist in the first period.
The Leafs received contributions from the big boys on Tuesday. Auston Matthews led the way with a goal and an assist.
It was the sixth time in the last seven games that Dallas allowed four or more goals. They are 3-2-2 over that span.
“We can’t forget our roots,” Jamie Benn said. “We need to be hard to play against, better in our D zone, and we can’t be playing from behind, giving up four or five a night.”
Sam’s Three Stars
- First Star: Matt Murray, TOR (44-save shutout)
- Second Star: Auston Matthews, TOR (1 goal, 1 assist)
- Third Star: Mitch Marner, TOR (1 assist–extended point streak to 19 games)
He Said It
“We had so many chances, so it’s a little bit frustrating,” Miro Heiskanen said. “But that’s part of the game sometimes. We had so many good chances, we just need to score.”