StarGazing - March 16th vs. Chicago Blackhawks
Friday, 03.16.2012 / 9:49 AM CT / News
Dallas Stars (39-27-5, 83 points – 3rd, Western Conference)
vs. Chicago Blackhawks (38-25-8, 84 points – 6th, Western Conference)
7:30 p.m. CT at American Airlines Center
FOX Sports Southwest and Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket
ALL-TIME SERIES RESULTS vs. CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS:
This Season: 2-1-0
10/07/11 – vs. Chicago, 2-1 W
10/08/11 – @ Chicago, 2-5 L
02/23/12 – @ Chicago, 3-1 W
03/16/12 – vs. Chicago
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH:
1. The Dallas Stars and Chicago Blackhawks conclude their season series on Friday night in a potential first-round playoff matchup. Dallas leads the season series with a 2-1-0 record and have won five of their last six games against them overall. The Stars, who hold the third seed in the West, would hold home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs against the Chicago Blackhawks if they started today.
2. Glen Gulutzan is one victory shy of earning 40 for the season. He will join Ken Hitchcock and Dave Tippett as the only coaches in franchise history to earn 40-or-more wins in their first season as head coach. He will also be the first rookie head coach to 40 wins since Guy Boucher won 46 games last season with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
3. Friday’s game features two of the top-five highest goal scoring 2007 NHL Draft picks. Patrick Kane leads the list with 121 goals in 388 games played while Jamie Benn is fifth with 65 goals in 211 games.
4. After playing five of the last seven games on the road, the Stars return to play in Dallas for four consecutive games. They play against Chicago (Friday), Phoenix (Tuesday), Vancouver (Thursday) and Calgary (Saturday) before heading out to Western Canada and California for a four-game trip.
5. Friday’s game will be the 250th all-time meeting between these two teams. The only team the Stars have seen more often than the Chicago Blackhawks are the St. Louis Blues, who have faced-off against the Stars 259 times.
WHO TO WATCH:
KARI LEHTONEN is riding a shutout streak of 128 minutes, 32 seconds. He has an 8-0-1 record over his last nine starts with a 1.29 goals against average (GAA) and a .955 save percentage (SV%). His back-to-back shutouts are the first for the Stars since Dec. 2006, when Marty Turco blanked San Jose and Phoenix in consecutive games.
LOUI ERIKSSON earned two goals in his last game against Winnipeg. He is one of six NHL players who has had a 60-point campaign for four consecutive seasons.
STEVE OTT has more career goals (10) against Chicago than any other NHL club. Three of those 10 goals have come on the power play.