2013-14 Midseason Grades: Defense

Alex Goligoski

41 GP, 2 G, 12 A, 14 P, -2 rating, 22 PIM, 1 PPG, 1 PPA, 77 SOG, 23:56 TOI/G

Like previous years, Goose had a very slow start. He had only one point in the first 11 games and didn’t really get going until the middle of November. Since then, he’s been above average and has done an overall good job on the blue line.

It’s still a far cry from what the team is expecting out of him though, and he hasn’t scored a goal since the first of November. He is leading the team in TOI/G and has been one of the few healthy bodies in defense. He’s improved in the past month, but it’s still just not enough.

Midseason Grade: B-


Sergei Gonchar

36 GP, 0 G, 12 A, 12 P, -7 rating, 10 PIM, 0 PPG, 8 PPA, 49 SOG, 19:01 TOI/G

Boy, you want to talk about a disappointment. Gonchar was supposed to come in and provide some stability to the blue line. Instead, he’s been a turnover machine and a horrific defender. More often than not, he’s on the wrong side of a scoring chance, and the goalies have had to bail him out numerous times.

The only thing Gonchar has done well is his work on the power play, which really isn’t that great. His eight points are second to only Seguin. Gonchar has been a major disappointment this year, and he was passed up by the Russian Olympic team as a result.

Midseason Grade: C-


Brenden Dillon

42 GP, 5 G, 7 A, 12 P, +1 rating, 53 PIM, 0 PPG, 0 PPA, 63 SOG, 21:54 TOI/G

Dillon is, and has been, the best defenseman for Dallas for the past year and a half. He had a great start to the year offensively and has been one of the few guys Dallas can count on to help Lehtonen. He’s slowed down a bit offensively in the past month, but he leads the team in hits and is the best physical presence on the team.

Midseason Grade: B


Jordie Benn

39 GP, 1 G, 7 A, 8 P, +7 rating, 16 PIM, 1 PPG, 1 PPA, 47 SOG, 18:00 TOI/G

The elder Benn hasn’t been quite as bad as most people make him out to be, but he hasn’t exactly been a big asset either. He’s also had a problem with turnovers as well as looking like a pylon out there. He should be no more than a depth defenseman, but injuries have catapulted him to a second pair role at times.

Midseason Grade: C


Trevor Daley

28 GP, 1 G, 4 A, 5 P, 0 rating, 24 PIM, 0 PPG, 1 PPA, 48 SOG, 19:39 TOI/G

Daley was playing alright before his rough crash into the boards and subsequent injury. He just returned in the Stars game against the Islanders and had 19 minutes of ice time.  He had a pretty good month in November, so hopefully he gets back to that form.

Midseason Grade: B-


Stephane Robidas

24 GP, 4 G, 1 A, 5 P, +7 rating, 12 PIM, 1 PPG, 0 PPA, 35 SOG, 19:55 TOI/G

Robi has been out for a long time due to a leg fracture and won’t be back for a while, if at all, this year. He was scoring more goals than expected and was once again a leader on defense. This could be the end of his Stars career though, so it’s sad to see it end this way.

Midseason Grade: Incomplete


Kevin Connauton

17 GP, 1 G, 4 A, 5 P, -2 rating, 8 PIM, 0 PPG, 2 PPA, 34 SOG, 16:04 TOI/G

Knauts has been solid since he started getting regular playing time. He’s been a good playmaker on offense and hasn’t been too bad on defense. He’s only had one real bad game, which should be great considering he’s a rookie. Bad games should be expected. He’s honestly been one of the best d-men on the team at the midway mark.

Midseason Grade: B-


Kari Lehtonen

34 GP, 16 W, 10 L, 7 OTL, 2.69 GAA, .914 SV%, 1 SO

It’s been another busy year for Kari. He started out great this season, making his usual amazing saves and keeping the Stars in just about every game. He’s struggled considerably though in the past month and has given up four or more goals five of the last 13 games. He’s had more soft goals go in than usual.

Midseason Grade: B


Dan Ellis

11 GP, 4 W, 4 L, 0 OTL, 3.28 GAA, .897 SV%, 0 SO

Ellis is what he is. He’s been fortunate to get some great offense behind him in his wins as he’s been less than stellar on most nights. His best game was against the Flyers in which he only allowed one goal on 28 shots.

Midseason Grade: C+