Will the Dallas Stars make the playoffs this season?

(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Playoff hockey! It’s the greatest two month stretch in sports. There are games on every night. Your favorite team plays every other night until they’re eliminated. It’s great. So, what does that mean for the Dallas Stars?

Two years ago, the Stars made a remarkable run to the Stanley Cup Final while playing in the bubble. Then last season, with a modified schedule and a different division the Dallas Stars missed the playoffs. Fast forward to this years and they’re right in the middle of the hunt.

Can the Dallas Stars make the playoffs this season?

With 13 games to play the Dallas Stars currently find themselves in the second wild card spot. They are one point behind the Nashville Predators for the first wild card spot and they are one point ahead of the Vegas Golden Knights, who are currently out of the playoffs.

A couple of things about Vegas. The Stars do have two games-in-hand against Vegas. In-other-words Dallas has 13 games left to play while Vegas only has 11. That’s a potential four extra points for the Stars if they should win those two extra games. Also, these two teams play each other one more time in Dallas.

The Stars have five games remaining with current playoff teams including the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Minnesota Wild, Toronto Maple Leafs and Tampa Bay Lightning. If you throw in the Vegas game, roughly half of their games are against playoff teams.

Vegas is also playing five games against current playoff teams – the Stars, St. Louis Blues, Washington Capitals, Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames. It would seem that the Stars should hold the advantage here since they have a couple more games against non-playoff teams.

But lets be honest, sitting in the second wild card spot isn’t ideal because that means a first round matchup with the Colorado Avalanche. The first wild card will play Calgary or Edmonton. So what are those odds?

Dallas and Nashville both have 13 games left. The Predators, though, have a brutal schedule. In that 13 games, the Preds have to play the Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Oilers, Blues, Flames, Lightning, Minnesota Wild, Flames and Avalanche. All nine of those teams are current playoff teams. So, like the scenario against Vegas, The Stars would appear to have the easier schedule here.

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So with all this talk about holding off Vegas for the second wild card spot, perhaps we should adjust our focus and talk about overthrowing Nashville for the first wild card. The goal is to get in the tournament. But, as a Dallas Stars fan, I’d prefer to avoid Colorado as long as possible.