Early Playoff Adversity Is Perfect Time For Max Domi, Others To Prove Worth
Updated: Apr 23
Dallas Stars fans are very familiar with GM Jim Nill saying “I like where this team is at.” Whether it was true belief in his roster or lack of trades, it has shown confidence in his roster. This year, as the Stars found themselves battling for the top spot in the conference AND division, things were very different. Star forward Denis Gurianov was sent to Montreal for Evgeni Dadonov. In addition, the Stars also sent struggling goaltender Anton Khudobin to Chicago for Dylan Wells (G) and (F) Max Domi.
Since being acquired by Dallas, Domi has 2 goals, 5 assists and a whopping 53.28 faceoff percentage to his name (not including playoffs). Domi added a different kind of energy for the Stars that they seemed to be missing in the regular season. Wherever they needed him to play, he slotted in and was a great fit. Whenever opposing teams tried to get physical during the final stretch to playoffs, Domi was ready for it.
Before being traded to Dallas, Evgeni Dadonov had 18 points in Montreal (4 goals, 14 assists) and has had very similar results. Dadonov played 23 games of the regular season with the Stars and finished with 3 goals and 12 assists.
While we can see that both were used in different capacities to close out the season, they have both been huge assets to the team. Both can score, both can get to where they need to be at a quick pace, and Domi isn’t afraid to throw a punch if needed. Thus far, both players have continued to prove their worth.
Dadonov, in the first three playoff games for the Stars has two goals t his name. Domi, on the other hand, has yet to score a single point. However, when things started to go awry after Matt Dumba bulldozed Joe Pavelski in Game 1, Domi was ready to fight. Ironically, not a single player on the Stars roster - other than Jamie Benn or Jani Hakanpää - have even tried to get physical. Now is the time.
Dallas brings a wealth of youthful exuberance to the rink against a fast, physical, and very strong Minnesota Wild team. These young men could very likely be what gets th Stars‘ comeback going. And, there are no better players to show the young players how to face adversity than Domi and Dadonov. Furthermore, there are no players better to light a fire under Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin, and the other guys who seem to be rather quiet thus far in the playoffs. Both have brought a different sense of aggression (towards opposing players and the puck) than what the Stars have been used to.
As the likes of Wyatt Johnston and Ty Dellandrea also gain playoff experience, the knowledge that Domi and Dadonov bring from their travels around the league will also prove beneficial. Dallas plays in just over an hour. These two players were brought in to be “game changers” - and it’s time for them to change the trajectory of the playoffs. Domi and Dadonov have the opportunity, starting tonight, to prove they CAN be game changers.