After returning from the All-Star break with an impressive 6-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks on the road last night, the Dallas Stars will try to stop another hot team tonight in California. The Sharks won their first game back by demolishing the Blue Jackets 6-0 on Tuesday, and just like last season they have picked their game up after playing very average hockey to start the season. Now the Stars and Sharks push ahead into the second part of the season in the same spots they were in last season. The Sharks have again taken the Pacific division lead that the Stars were holding onto early in the year, and the Stars are walking the playoff line in the middle of the conference. But both teams will be looking to start a winning streak tonight in San Jose, and a mid-season contest between there two teams is rarely boring.
Both teams will be starting their backup netminders tonight. After Kari Lehtonen manned the pipes last night, Richard Bachman will start for Dallas tonight. The young goalie is 6-2-1 this season and the Stars are hoping he can continue to prove that he can provide very solid goaltending when the team needs him to start games down the stretch. At the other end the Sharks will start their young backup Thomas Greiss tonight. Less than a week after turning 26, Greiss will have a chance to pickup his 7th win this season as well (6-4-1). While Stars’ fans know about Richard Bachman from him stealing the roster spot from Andrew Raycroft, they should know that Greiss did the same thing to Antero Niittymaki in San Jose. So while both teams will be starting their secondary netminders tonight, it doesn’t really mean we should see a different game.
Puck drops again at 9:30 Central time for fans of the black and gold, so be prepared for a little more late night hockey. Brew up some coffee, skip out of work early to go get a nap in, or just down some Monsters like I will probably be doing. The broadcast will be on FoxSports SouthWest tonight (not FSSW+) and of course on 13010AM The Ticket if you are tuning in on the road or via your car radio.
- Nicklas Grossman is questionable tonight after missing last night’s contest with the flu. I expect the Stars will play without him tonight and stick with the six defensemen they played with last night.
- The Stars are 0-7-1 this year in the second game of back-to-backs and only one of those has been a one goal game. While a win would be huge, just getting one point tonight would be a “win” for this team.
- The Sharks have won both of the two previous meetings this season, 4-1 and then 5-2.