Wow, wow, wow... I was all set to write how the Stars played that second period like a headless chicken, and I would've been justified for most of the period. It was looking pretty friggin' bad considering how they started this one out.
And then James Neal brings them back to focus. And yes, I'm giving him a TON of credit here. The Stars were scrambling big-time. They were leaking all over the place, and Mary Turco's head was on a swivel with the Jackets buzzing. Then Neal gets that goal. And right before he got that goal he nailed Columbus defenseman Fedor Tyutin to give Mike Modano some space to shoot. Then he gets to the net and gets a big one. Tremendous. And just like that, the Stars woke up again.
Steve Ott didn't hurt matters, either. You felt bad for the guy on that post shot, but gets a stick on Jere Lehtinen's rebound and the Stars have their three-goal lead once again.
Gotta admit, I'm stunned to be writing about the Stars getting that advantage back. And at the end of the period, they started defending like they did against the Wings on Thursday: cutting the Jackets off around the blue line, their defensemen ready to recover and shoot it back the other way.
Entertaining stuff, kids, entertaining stuff.