Stars-Panthers Preview

Thursday, 10.03.2013 / 8:30 AM / Inside Edge
By Mark Stepneski

Florida Panthers at Dallas Stars
Thursday October 3
7:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/104.1 FM

About the Stars

It’s a new beginning for the Stars, who have a new GM, new head coach, several new players and new uniforms this season.

“It’s fresh. That’s the word that comes to mind,” said defenseman Trevor Daley. “There are a lot of new faces, not just in the dressing room but upstairs too. I think everybody is excited. Everybody is starting fresh and there is a good vibe around here.”

Among the Stars’ new players is Tyler Seguin, acquired in a blockbuster trade with Boston in July. He’ll center the Stars’ top line with Jamie Benn and Erik Cole on the wings. Valeri Nichushkin, the Stars’ first round pick (10th overall) in the 2013 NHL Draft, will be in the lineup as well. So will the newest face on defense, veteran Sergei Gonchar.

Kari Lehtonen is expected to start in goal for the Stars.

Dallas plays its first two games at home, including a tilt against Washington on Saturday.

Injuries: F Rich Peverley (irregular heartbeat) and D Aaron Rome (hip) are out.

About the Panthers

There’s a lot new this season with the Florida Panthers, who finished last in the NHL last season. They have a new owner in New York businessman Vincent Viola and ten new players on the roster. Among the new players this season is goaltender Tim Thomas, who will get the start in goal on Thursday.

"I think there's a positive energy," Thomas told reporters on Wednesday. "They're really looking forward to growing and getting better in the organization. I think new ownership brought a very positive direction to the team."

The Panthers made a series of moves over the past week, signing Thomas, defensemen Ryan Whitney and Tom Gilbert and forward Brad Boyes and trading for forward Krys Barch.

Jonathan Huberdeau, the 2013 Calder Trophy winner, and Aleksander Barkov, the second overall pick in the 2013 NHL Draft, are expected to play on one of Florida’s top lines along with Boyes.

The Panthers’ first four games of the season are on the road.

Injuries: D Ed Jovanovski (hip), F Sean Bergenheim (hip/abdomen), C Nick Bjugstad (concussion), RW Steve Pinizzotto (hip) and G Scott Clemmensen (knee) are out.

Series Notes

*This is the first of two meetings between the Stars and Panthers this season.

*The last time the two teams met was Nov. 15, 2011, when Florida won 6-0 at American Airlines Center.

*The Stars are 11-8-6 all-time against the Panthers, including 4-4-4 at home.

Statistical tidbits

*The Stars were 5-0-2 in the preseason, including a 2-0-0 mark vs. Florida.

*The Panthers were 3-1-3 in the preseason, and were 0-1-1 vs. Dallas.

*C Tyler Seguin led the Stars in preseason scoring with 7 points (1 goal, 6 assists)

*D Erik Gudbranson (3 goals, 3 assists) and D Brian Campbell (0 goals, 6 assists) led Florida in preseason scoring with 6 points each.

*Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen is 13-6-4 in his career vs. Florida with a 2.52 goals against average and .923 save percentage.

*Panthers goaltender Tim Thomas is 2-1-1 in his career vs. Dallas with a 1.49 goals against average and a .953 save percentage.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Benn 2 1 1 -1 2
C. Sceviour 2 1 1 0 2
A. Chiasson 2 1 1 -3 2
T. Seguin 2 1 0 0 1
R. Garbutt 2 1 0 1 1
S. Horcoff 2 0 1 1 1
T. Daley 2 0 1 -1 1
A. Goligoski 2 0 1 1 1
J. Benn 2 0 1 1 1
A. Roussel 2 0 1 1 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
K. Lehtonen 0 2 0 .870 3.56
 
 
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