Wandell Injury Could Be a Magic Wand for Dallas Stars Team Unity

John FlinchbaughCorrespondent IJanuary 23, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - JANUARY 12:  Tom Wandell #23 of the Dallas Stars skates against the Philadelphia Flyers on January 12, 2010 at Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Flyers defeated the Stars 6-3.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Sometimes losing one of your key players can be a blessing in disguise.

When the Dallas Stars lost Tom Wandell to a knee injury in Thursday's match with Vancouver, the team ended up losing 4-3 to the Canucks in a game where they really needed to get a point for the standings.  It is possible that Wandell may be out for a significant amount of time. 

How did the Stars respond to this jawbreaking injury? They go into Edmonton on the second night of a back-to-back and reverse the score from the previous night. A 4-3 win over the last-seeded Oilers is just what Tom Wandell would want his doctor to order, aside from a knee that heals with the speed of a cheetah. 

In 50 games this season, Tom Wandell has five goals, 10 assists, and a +/- of 2.  His plus/minus ranking is 4th on the Stars, behind Fistric, Grossman, and Sutherby.  The difference is that Fistric, Grossman, and Sutherby (FGS) have 16 points combined between the three of them.  Wandell nearly surpasses that total by himself!

It is obvious Wandell is very crucial to the success of this 10th-seeded team as they strive to obtain a playoff spot.  His high +/- total coupled with his points production speak for themselves.  Now it is up for Marc Crawford, Joe Nieuwendyk, and Tom Hicks to promote team unity throughout the locker room, practice rink in Frisco, the marketing department at the American Airlines Center, and the NHL.

If the above steps are taken, the Dallas Stars will have skyrocketed to 4th or 5th in the standings by the time Tom Wandell returns.  Here's to a quick recovery, Tom!