The Dallas Stars have suffered through and up-and-down start to the 2013-14 NHL season, and head coach Lindy Ruff is ready to make some changes on the blue line. Alex Goligoski and Sergei Gonchar have both left much to be desired with their play in all three zones and could be scratched for today’s game against the Anaheim Ducks.
Dallas raised some eyebrows when they traded for and then signed Sergei Gonchar to a two-year deal worth $10 million. The offensive-defenseman was thought to be capable of putting up 30 points in a season at the very least, but so far has yet to score a goal and only has one assist to his name.
His inability to pick up his man in the defensive zone has been too costly for the Stars to make it worth keeping him in the lineup moving forward. He’s a minus-5 and hasn’t been able to make any sort of impact on the games that he’s played in. Because of that, he might be the odd man out as the Stars take on the Ducks.
Ruff also said he would skate seven d men in warm-ups and he would pick then. Guess is Goligoski or Gonchar could be a scratch.
— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) October 20, 2013
While age might have something to do with Gonchar’s declining capabilities, Goligoski has no comparable excuse. He’s just been awful through seven games, posting zero points and posting a minus-7 on the year.
That’s not good enough for two guys that are supposed to be anchors for the Stars. While neither of them have the reputation of being brick houses in their own end, their lack of attention to detail has been unacceptable. Ruff is doing the right thing here in sending the message, and if the Stars end up rolling then the pair could end up sitting out for a few consecutive games.