As each NHL team is eliminated from playoff contention — either mathematically or by losing in the postseason — we’ll take a look at why its quest for the Stanley Cup fell short in 2017-18, along with three keys to its offseason and a way-too-early prediction on what 2018-19 will hold.
What went wrong
Sometimes it’s easy: We can pinpoint the exact moment it all spiraled. For the Dallas Stars, it was the “road trip from hell” (that’s what Tyler Seguin called it, at least).
During a six-game stretch from March 11 to March 20, the Stars went 0-4-2. A team that had been in playoff position since before Christmas suddenly was on the outside looking in — and it could not recover, missing the playoffs for the eighth time in 10 seasons.