Tonight’s Stars-Sharks game has the same implications as the classic 4-OT thriller that kept us up until 1:24 in the morning on May 5, 2008– a literal holiday known to Stars fans as Cinco de Morrow. Maybe this isn’t the most important hockey to be played in Texas since that glorious night, but it’s pretty damn close.
This game is do or die for the Stars. A win will vault our Stars into a playoff position and increase our playoff chances. A loss could all but eliminate us. Any result but winning simply won’t do at this point.
If you look back at the expectations set for us at the beginning of the season, we’ve gone so much farther than anyone but Stars fans would have guessed. It’s truly amazing how expectations change over the course of one season. What started out as a potential playoff team has evolved into a legit contender. Even though making it to this position is impressive, anything but the playoffs will be heartbreaking We all believed in our team at tge beginning, and we will believe until the end.
I’ve pretended to be nonchalant about the stressful playoff race, but it’s hard to do that now. Dammit, I want to make the playoffs! I want in, whether the Stars are in the 3rd, 7th, or 8th seed. And whatever happens after that happens. It is what it is.
Tonight’s game is the most important of this season. And we can do this.
If Kari carries this team the way he has at the most crucial points this season, the Stars are a playoff team.
If Loui, Ryder, Ribs, and the Bennster play at the top of their game, the Stars are a playoff team.
If Sheldon Souray shows the rejuvenated form he did at the beginning of this season, the Stars are a playoff team.
Bottom line, this team can make the playoffs. And, quite honestly, I think they deserve it. Up against a deathly small payroll, rocky ownership, and a tight Pacific division, they’re in charge of their own destiny.
What will it be, Stars?
The one that got away, or a trip to the postseason that will mean more than anyone outside of Dallas will ever know?
The choice is yours.