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Original Issue

Pierre McGuire's In the Crease

When Stars G.M. Doug Armstrong was fired on Nov. 13 after five years in that job, Dallas was 7-7-3. Through Sunday the team was 34-20-5—without having made a significant roster change. Five current Stars were drafted under Armstrong, who also acquired top scorer Mike Ribeiro (right) from Montreal (for Janne Niinimaa, who's out of the NHL) and 20-goal man Niklas Hagman from Florida (for a seventh-round draft pick). Armstrong should be on the short list of any team looking for a G.M.... The Bruins have had the league's second-fewest power plays largely because, lacking big forwards, they don't spend a lot of time in the offensive zone. The solution? Coach Claude Julien wants Boston to cycle the puck better and thus force opponents to defend more intensely near the net, which should cause them to commit more penalties.