For Lindy Ruff, no one is above being benched.
The Dallas Stars already were in a 2-3-1 slump going into Tuesday’s game against the New York Rangers when they found themselves down 5-1 in the third period. And for Ruff, that was enough to bench his two All-Stars, Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn.
“We really, totally, embarrassed ourselves,” the Stars coach said, per Yahoo! Sports’ Greg Wyshynski. “They had a rough night. There’s no getting around it. By the end of the night, I just didn’t play them anymore.”
The game still was close toward the end of the second period with the Rangers up 2-1, but before the midway point of the next frame, New York exploded for three more goals. And Seguin and Benn were on the ice for all of them.
“It starts with myself. Starts with our line,” Seguin said. “We haven’t been playing well this whole trip. Cheating offensively. We gotta get home, regroup. Dig deeper than we have been. Come out of this together.”
Benn also took responsibility for the eventual 6-2 loss.
“It was stupid hockey, and it was not good enough,” Benn said. “It’s myself not leading the way. It was pretty much embarrassing. I played a terrible game and let my teammates down.”
And for Ruff, the 12-minute benching wasn’t just a message for the team, but for Seguin and Benn, as well.
“They’re not excluded from having rough nights,” Ruff said. “They’re going through a tough spell. And you need your best players to push you through. There’s not much time to regroup.”
Thumbnail photo via Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin (91) and left wing Jamie Benn (14) prepare for the face-off against the St. Louis Blues during the first period at the American Airlines Center.
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