The Stars return home tonight after a two-game road trip to take on the division-leading Anaheim Ducks. Tonight will be the first time the two teams have met this season.
Both teams have had exceptional recent matches. The Ducks will be fighting to extend a four-game win streak and the Stars will be pushing for a three-game win streak for the first time this season.
The Ducks, tied for the top spot in the Pacific with the San Jose Sharks, lead the Stars by four points in the division standings. Two points one way or the other would either propel the Ducks further into the lead, or make the Stars a serious competitor for the hastily approaching playoffs. The Stars currently hold the ninth spot in conference standings, tied with the Edmonton Oilers.
Jamie Benn will undeniably be a force to be reckoned with tonight, coming off two games with at least one goal scored and a game-saving shootout goal against Phoenix in the Stars’ last home game.
Jaromir Jagr can be expected to have a strong game tonight also, continuing to prove he’s one of the most significant members of this year’s young team. Jagr was responsible for both the game-winning goals against Edmonton Wednesday and the shootout winner against the Coyotes earlier this month.
Kari Lehtonen is the likely starter in goal tonight.
The Stars will have their hands full against this year’s Anaheim team. Tonight marks the sixth straight game the Ducks have spent on the road, proving they don’t need a home crowd to push them to a win.
New to the NHL from the Swedish league this season, Viktor Fasth has proven to be stingy in the net, touting a .098 goals against average. He currently leads the league in goals allowed against and save percentages.
Former Dallas Star Sheldon Souray has also made a name for himself as a new member of the Anaheim team, scoring a goal in three straight games.
On the injured list for tonight are Anaheim’s Toni Lydman with flu like symptoms and Cam Fowler with an upper body injury. Ray Whitney is still out for the Stars, tending to a broken foot.
The game will air tonight on Fox Sports Southwest with the first puck dropping at 7:30 central, 5:30 eastern.