Stars-Capitals Preview

Friday, 10.4.2013 / 10:31 PM CT / Inside Edge
By Mark Stepneski
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Stars-Capitals Preview

Washington Capitals at Dallas Stars
Saturday October 5
7:00 p.m.
TV: TXA 21
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/104.1 FM

About the Stars

The Stars (0-1-0) opened the season with a 4-2 loss to the Florida Panthers at American Airlines Center Thursday. The Stars had a 2-1 lead in the third period, but Florida scored two goals in a 4:33 span to take the lead and then sealed the win with an empty-net goal.

“You can’t take anything for granted,” said Stars defenseman Brenden Dillon. “No lead is safe. We were up 2-1 and then bang-bang, they’re back up 3-2 with four minutes to go. So we’ve got to be more sound defensively.”

The Stars gave up 39 shots in the game, something they’ll look to improve on in Saturday’s game against Washington.

“I expect to see a lot more battle,” Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. “We went by too many battles tonight. We didn’t stop on pucks. And I really feel we built our preseason over most of that, and we took some of those plays for granted tonight.”

Kari Lehtonen, who stopped 35 of 38 shots in Thursday’s game, is expected to start Saturday night.

Injuries: C Rich Peverley (irregular heartbeat) is probable. D Aaron Rome (hip) is out.

About the Capitals

The Capitals (1-1-0) overcame a 3-0 deficit and defeated Calgary 5-4 in a shootout in Washington Thursday. Alex Ovechkin scored two goals in regulation and also tallied in the shootout for the Capitals.

"We've done it a lot before, come back like that," Washington forward Brooks Laich said. "We've got potent offensive guys that can do it, so the game is never over."

Goaltender Braden Holtby was pulled in the first period after allowing three goals on 11 shots. Holtby, who has given up eight goals on 45 shots over his first two starts, will get the nod in net Saturday against the Stars.

“Everybody has hiccups. Everybody," Capitals coach Adam Oates said. "And he's got to understand that's what it is.”

Injuries: D Jack Hillen (leg) is out.

Series Notes

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

*The two teams last met on November 8, 2011, when the Stars won 5-2 in Washington.

*The Stars are 42-27-18 all-time against the Capitals.

Statistical tidbits

*The Capitals are 5-9 (55.6 percent) on the power play through their first two games.

*The Stars were 4-4 on the penalty kill in their season opener.

*The Capitals are 7-9 (77.8 percent) on the penalty kill through their first two games.

*The Stars were 0-3 on the power play and failed to register a shot on goal while having the man-advantage in their first game.

*Alex Ovechkin leads Washington in goals (3) and points (5) through two games.

*Brenden Dillon leads the Stars in points with 2 (1 goal, 1 assist).

*Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen is 11-6-2 in his career against Washington with a 2.76 goals against average and .920 save percentage.

*Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby has never faced the Dallas Stars in his career.

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 CHI 57 36 17 4 158 130 76
2 DAL 54 34 15 5 174 145 73
3 STL 56 30 17 9 133 130 69
4 LAK 52 32 17 3 144 119 67
5 SJS 52 28 20 4 149 138 60
6 ANA 52 26 19 7 117 122 59
7 NSH 54 25 21 8 139 144 58
8 COL 56 27 25 4 149 155 58
9 MIN 53 23 20 10 130 130 56
10 ARI 52 24 22 6 138 161 54
11 VAN 53 21 20 12 123 143 54
12 CGY 52 24 25 3 138 151 51
13 WPG 53 24 26 3 137 151 51
14 EDM 55 21 29 5 133 166 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Benn 54 28 33 16 61
T. Seguin 54 28 30 11 58
J. Klingberg 54 9 35 15 44
J. Spezza 52 18 22 5 40
P. Sharp 54 16 24 -1 40
A. Goligoski 54 4 20 17 24
C. Eakin 54 10 13 1 23
M. Janmark 54 10 10 13 20
J. Demers 48 7 12 16 19
V. Nichushkin 51 6 13 7 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 20 10 5 .908 2.52
K. Lehtonen 14 5 0 .909 2.82
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