If not for an April collapse that saw the club fall from first to fourth place in the Pacific Division, the Dallas Stars would have made the Stanley Cup Playoffs this spring for the first time since 2008. While the members of the team would have preferred to play in the NHL postseason, a half-dozen Dallas players received the opportunity to represent their home countries at the 2012 IIHF World Championship in Helsinki and Stockholm.
To date, five of the seven Stars players in the tournament have been standouts for their respective teams. Left winger Loui Eriksson (Sweden) leads all players in scoring through the first three games, compiling three power-play goals and six points overall. Canada's Jamie Benn, who spent most of the first half of the season on Eriksson's line in Dallas, shares the tourney goal-scoring lead with his Stars teammate.
Coming off an outstanding regular season in Dallas, Finland goaltender Kari Lehtonen hasn't skipped a beat at the Worlds. He has already recorded a shutout and has turned aside 47 of 49 shots in his two preliminary-round starts to date.