As the Stanley Cup Finals draw near, fans of teams who missed the playoffs look forward to the 2015-16 draft. Until then, June brings a few weeks during which to reflect on the 2014-15 season’s best memories. Multiple losing streaks made the highly anticipated 2014-15 season agonizing for Stars fans, but it was not without its highlights. On and off the ice, the Stars players and organization participated in humorous shenanigans and strange flukes of physics that made the season oddly memorable. After all, Stars fans love to “get weird,” and the organization makes it happen.
1. 2014: A Mascot Odyssey
Danger, danger, Dallas, Texas! As the Stars revealed the new mascot, Victor E. Green, piecemeal to the Dallas audience, fans grew curious. Initially, the Stars’ official Twitter revealed a pair of Stars-themed runners and cowboy boots. Once some confusing plumes of green fuzz and an antenna were pictured via social media, fans noticed a mascot coming together, but no one fully knew what to expect.
When the Stars introduced Victor during the off-season Ice Breaker at Galleria Dallas, young fans discovered that this tufty extraterrestrial came with coloring pages and a saucy attitude. With the season’s struggles, however, poor Victor became a scapegoat. Suddenly, the hirsute, hockey-loving alien served as an omen of the Stars dying playoff hopes.
Regardless of Vic’s social stigma, kids still love him, and he’s never too famous to perform in low-budget intermission dance parodies.
2. Tyler Seguin Shaves Jordie Benn’s Beard in Super Bowl Bet
Tyler Seguin and Jordie Benn went in on an interesting bet as New England faced Seattle in the Superbowl. Seguin would shave his head if the Seahawks won, and Benn would shave his coveted beard if the Patriots took the title. When New England won, Jordie Benn lost, and Tyler Seguin defaced a national treasure.
3. Benn and Seguin Prank Their Moms
No one is safe from original pranksters, Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin; not even their mothers. For Valentine’s Day, TSN’s Cabbie Presents put the duo up to a difficult task; convincing their moms that they were each engaged to women whom they had secretly dated long-term.
Of course, mom always wins in the end. For Mother’s Day, the ladies pranked their sons, allowing them to believe they wanted to be their new agents.
4. AAC Jumbotron Trolls the Opposition
Known for snarky humor and jabs at opposing fans, the Stars’ video board continued to grow in legend during the 2014-15 season. Never the types to mince words, the video crew entertains the intermission audience with memes that troll opposing players, fans, broadcasters, and celebrities alike.
SWING and a miss! pic.twitter.com/7U4bjYMDP4
— Stars Jumbotron (@StarsJumbotron) February 14, 2015
The Stars video crew also took the opportunity to poke fun at a few mistakes made in nationally broadcast games. In 2014-15, no one was safe from the video crew’s wrath.
Dallas Stars jumbotron operator at it again tonight.. this time making fun of the NBC broadcast. pic.twitter.com/PJuQoJqjLo
— Brady Trettenero (@BradyTrett) January 7, 2015
5. Benn and Seguin’s Trick Shots with DudePerfect
With the new season came new viral videos as Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin teamed up with trick-shot practitioners, DudePerfect. The guys lit matches with pucks, shot plates out of the air, scored baskets, and shot rubber ducks and donuts on net in true displays of skill. Without game-time pressure, it’s entertaining to see what top NHL players can do while having fun.
6. Roussel Hit Sends Kessel Flying
Antoine Roussel sets up some crazy plays. The man is notorious for scoring off opposing players, or deflecting the puck into the net off of his body. However, this hit on Phil Kessel defies gravity. Roussel is 6’0”, 200 pounds, while Kessel is listed as 6’0”, 202 pounds on the Maple Leafs roster. This hit should have been evenly matched, it seems, if only Antoine Roussel didn’t possess hidden telekinetic powers.
7. Erik Cole’s Fluky Empty Netter
Just before sealing a win over the Bruins, Erik Cole attempted to clear the defensive zone. As the Stars made the change, the puck, turned up on a corner, made a curving bee-line for the open net. In disbelief, Stars color commentator, Daryl Reaugh, quipped, “it never put its signal on!”
8. Jason Demers Wins Over Fans in First Game
Following the trade that sent Jason Demers to Dallas in exchange for fan favorite, Brenden Dillon, Demers made a big impact at home versus the Kings. When Jarret Stoll skated the puck through center ice, Demers laid him out with an open-ice check that halted the Kings’ forecheck at the Stars’ blueline.
9. John Klingberg’s Center Ice Knuckle Puck
Rarely do players pull off stunts from the Mighty Ducks films, but John Klingberg made the knuckle puck work. This center ice stunner only added to Klingberg’s increasingly intimidating reputation. Scoring 11 goals and 29 assists for 40 total points in 65 NHL games, Klingberg finished the season as the highest scoring rookie defenseman in the league.
10. Jhonas Enroth Shuts Out the Ducks
When Dallas lost to Buffalo late in the season, it seemed the Stars had hit rock bottom. Shortly thereafter, Jim Nill traded backup goaltender, Anders Lindback, for Sabres goalie, Jhonas Enroth. In the Sabres’ 3-2 win in February, Enroth displayed great poise and patience in net, making a big impression. For years, the Stars craved a reliable backup to take some weight off Kari Lehtonen’s shoulders. It’s now likely that they’ve found that player in Enroth. The 26 year-old Swede proved this possible as he backstopped the Stars to a 4-0 shutout over a hot Ducks team.
As Enroth approaches free agency, the Stars will consider whether he has a future in Dallas. With a late-season hot-streak, Enroth certainly made a solid case for a new contract.
Dallas Hockey Entertains Fans Through Both the Good Times and Bad
Sure, the 2014-15 season wasn’t the Stars’ most successful endeavor, but the team took a few steps forward in the second year of a rebuild. With a sassy in-arena experience and players who possess a scoring touch, the organization almost has everything it needs to captivate fans. Now the goal is to collect home wins in 2015-16; hopefully with growing confidence, a maturing blueline, and increasingly reliable backup goaltending. Even if the 2014-15 season was consistently weird and fluky, at least it served as one entertaining stepping stone.