Stars Advance to Second Round With G7 Win

The Dallas Stars celebrate after defeating the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 7 of the First Round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at American Airlines Center on May 5 | Image by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

The Dallas Stars defeated the Las Vegas Golden Knights 2-1 in Game 7 of the first round of the NHL Playoffs on Sunday to advance to the second round against the Colorado Avalanche.

Both teams opted for a physical approach to Game 7, but the Stars never trailed in the game and took a lead early in the final period that they managed to hold onto to capture the win.

The Stars had an early opportunity to take the lead during a power play, coming after Knights right wing Keegan Kolesar was put in the penalty box for two minutes for holding Stars left wing Jason Robertson.

Dallas could not convert on the advantage, however, with the team failing to take a single shot on goal and ending the power play scoreless with 13:38 remaining in the first period.

Stars Head Coach Pete DeBoer said that the teams seemed to be “feeling each other out” early on and that there were “not a lot of shooting lanes” for the offense.

However, Dallas eventually found a shooting lane as center Wyatt Johnston stole the puck from the Knights and sent it straight past goalie Adin Hill to give the home team a 1-0 lead with 5:26 remaining in the first period.

The remainder of the period was even between the teams, as the Stars went into the locker room for the first intermission leading 1-0.

The defensive battle continued to start the next period, with the Stars being the first to reach 10 shots on goal after nearly 30 minutes of total game time, coming on a shot by defenseman Miro Heiskanen that was saved by Hill with 10:54 remaining.

Vegas quickly turned on the gas, accumulating multiple shots on goal that eventually led to a tip-in goal by center Brett Howden off an assist from right-wing Michael Amadio and center William Karlsson with 4:35 left in the period.

Howden’s first goal of the game helped guide the two teams into the second intermission, tied 1-1.

Dallas began the final period hot as left-wing Radek Faksa put the Stars up 2-1 off a backhanded shot that flew past Hill less than a minute into the action.

The Stars stayed in attack mode despite taking the lead, as they sent five shots on goal in a two-minute span shortly after Faksa’s goal, with each being blocked by Hill before the puck could cross the line.

Vegas got the chance to tie the game up following a two-minute penalty on Stars right-wing Evgenii Dadonov after goalie Jake Oettinger was called for tripping a Knights player.

Dallas survived the penalty as they held on to their 2-1 lead with 9 minutes remaining in the game.

The Knights attempted to even the score late in the game, opting to empty the net and add an additional offensive player with just 1:50 remaining in the game.

However, the additional player did not prove meaningful for the Knights, as Dallas prevented any goals during this timeframe and walked away with a 2-1 victory.

Game 7 featured physical play from players on each side, with the two teams totaling 86 hits over the 60 minutes of action.

Oettinger played a key role in the Stars’ win as he saved 95.7% of the 23 shots on goal Knights players sent his way.

Dallas is now set to host Game 1 of the second round against the Colorado Avalanche, who easily defeated the Winnipeg Jets in just five games in their first-round matchup.

Game 1 is Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. CT at the American Airlines Center.

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