You should record what I’m about to say, so that if I’m correct, I can feel really awesome and victorious. Okay, here it is, my big, bold prediction:
The Dallas Stars will win the 2010 Stanley Cup.
Got that? And guess what? I actually have some reasons to back it up.
1. The 2009-2010 Dallas Stars team is basically the same one that went to the Western Conference Final in 2008. There are a few guys gone, but I feel that they’ve been replaced with off-season additions. The big guns from that playoff run are still here, though. So, why couldn’t they achieve the same success this year?
2. Healthy Stars are good. Last year was a complete fluke with all of the bad luck with injuries and Avery’s. We’ve all seen this team at their best, and their best is pretty damn good. If the Stars can avoid the injury bug, they’re good to go.
3. We’ve never actually seen the real Brad Richards. When B-rad came to Dallas last year, he battled mono for most of the regular season. Then, we all know what happened last season. That’s not to mention that, before he was out, his shoulder was bothering him. He fixed that shoulder in the off-season, and he should be good to go. This might be the season when we see the real him.
4. Marty Turco has a reliable backup this time around. The Tobias Stephan experiment went horribly, horribly wrong because the poor guy wasn’t trusted by coaches or management. The new guy, Alex Auld, will be a reliable backup. I’ve seen him play, and he’s not bad. He’s seen experience as a starter, so he should be a good backup. Besides, he’s played under Marc Crawford before, so he knows the system.
5. They can beat the Red Wings now. Maybe going 3-1 against the Wings last year was also a fluke, but maybe it wasn’t. Detroit has had our number for awhile now, but last year was different. Marty also got his first career regular season win at the Joe, and that’s definitely a confidence-booster.
6. We really only need to worry about Chicago now. Last year’s games against the Hawks were one word: atrocious. But for all of them, someone was either hurt or Avery was still there. The biggest problem with Chicago was that they were quick and speedy. Under Marc Crawford’s more fast-paced system, the Stars might be able to catch up and win a game or two.
7. The young guys all have another year of experience. With more experience comes more confidence. I’m really starting to believe in the kid defensemen- Niskanen, Grossman, and Fistric- now. And I really like what I’ve seen from Neal and Brunnstrom. Beware the sophomore slump, though.
8. The Dallas Stars are a hungry team. Every single player is disappointed with last season. Some haven’t played for months. Every Star is excited for the new season. Brenden Morrow, for example, has a lot of pent-up anger, and I’m sure he can’t wait tot throw his body around and take out opponents.
New coaching and GM aside, I think the Stars will have a great season. No one really believes in them, and it’s better that way. Just watch when every single “expert” who wrote the Stars off gets the biggest surprise when they own the West. Maybe not the West, but possible the Pacific. Well, they probably won’t win any titles, but that doesn’t matter as long as they get the big one: the Stanley Cup.
I believe. Does anyone else?