Stars-Blackhawks Morning Skate

Tuesday, 12.10.2013 / 12:56 PM CT / Inside Edge
By Mark Stepneski
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Stars-Blackhawks Morning Skate

They meet again. The Dallas Stars and Chicago Blackhawks play for the third time in 12 days – and for the fourth time in the last month – when they square off tonight at American Airlines Center.

The Stars are 1-1-1 in the season series and the Blackhawks are 2-1-0. Chicago won the first two games, which were both played in Dallas, and the Stars won 4-3 in Chicago last Tuesday despite getting outshot 50-18 in the game.

“We know each other a little bit better. They know what to expect, we know what to expect,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “The game in Chicago got a little bit out of hand for us. I thought they dominated puck possession and territorial play. I thought the games here previously we had a shot at winning, and maybe we had the edge. From both situations both teams learn. We have to make adjustments and be ready to go.”

With Vernon Fiddler (upper body) out for tonight’s game, it appears Dustin Jeffery will be back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch on Saturday.

The Stars are expected to go with the same group of defenseman as last game, meaning that Aaron Rome will be the odd man out. Colton Sceviour is expected to be a healthy scratch as well.

Kari Lehtonen was the first goaltender off the ice this morning, which indicates that he will start in goal tonight.

Antti Raanta will start for the Blackhawks, who announced Tuesday that No. 1 goaltender Corey Crawford will miss three weeks with a lower body injury.

Fiddler skates, doing better

Stars center Vernon Fiddler, who is out for tonight’s game against Chicago with an upper body injury, is making progress. He skated this morning and may be back sooner than originally thought.

“He’s doing better than we expected,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “I think sometimes these things come around quicker than you anticipate. We want to keep his legs going, and I think there’s a chance later in the week that he could be back in our lineup.”

Fiddler was injured in the first period of Saturday’s game against Philadelphia.

Stars loan Austin Smith to Finland

The Stars have loaned right wing Austin Smith to Assat of the SM-Liiga in Finland. The Dallas native, a fifth round pick in the 2007 NHL draft, is in his second pro season and has played with both the Texas Stars and Idaho Steelheads.

Smith had one goal in four games with Idaho this season. He had no points in ten games with Texas.

Tuesday’s game
Who: Chicago Blackhawks at Dallas Stars
Where: American Airlines Center
When: 7:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

Projected Stars lineup

Jamie BennTyler SeguinValeri Nichushkin
Ryan Garbutt
Cody EakinAntoine Roussel
Erik Cole
Shawn HorcoffAlex Chiasson/Colton Sceviour
Ray Whitney
Dustin JeffreyRich Peverley

Alex GoligoskiBrenden Dillon
Jordie Benn
Sergei Gonchar
Kevin Connauton
Jamie Oleksiak

Kari Lehtonen (starter)
Dan Ellis

Projected Blackhawks lineup

Patrick Sharp – Jonathan Toews – Marian Hossa
Kris Versteeg – Michal Handzus – Patrick Kane
Brandon Saad – Andrew Shaw – Jeremy Morin
Brandon Bollig – Marcus Kruger – Ben Smith

Duncan Keith – Brent Seabrook
Johnny Oduya – Niklas Hjalmarsson
Nick Leddy – Michael Kostka

Antti Raanta (starter)
Kent Simpson

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 - DAL 82 50 23 9 267 230 109
2 x - STL 82 49 24 9 224 201 107
3 x - CHI 82 47 26 9 235 209 103
4 y - ANA 82 46 25 11 218 192 103
5 x - LAK 82 48 28 6 225 195 102
6 x - SJS 82 46 30 6 241 210 98
7 x - NSH 82 41 27 14 228 215 96
8 x - MIN 82 38 33 11 216 206 87
9 COL 82 39 39 4 216 240 82
10 ARI 82 35 39 8 209 245 78
11 WPG 82 35 39 8 215 239 78
12 CGY 82 35 40 7 231 260 77
13 VAN 82 31 38 13 191 243 75
14 EDM 82 31 43 8 203 245 70

STATS

2015-2016 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Benn 8 5 7 7 12
J. Spezza 8 4 5 0 9
C. Eakin 8 0 7 3 7
A. Goligoski 8 3 2 -3 5
P. Eaves 7 2 3 3 5
P. Sharp 8 3 1 2 4
R. Faksa 8 2 2 2 4
J. Klingberg 8 1 3 -2 4
A. Hemsky 8 1 3 2 4
M. Janmark 7 1 3 0 4
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
K. Lehtonen 4 1 0 .906 2.45
A. Niemi 1 2 2 .892 2.73
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