Feb 28, 2013; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen (32) faces the Edmonton Oilers attack during the third period at the American Airlines Center. The Oilers defeated the Stars 5-1. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Stars take on Blues, look to gain ground in standings

The Dallas Stars will close out a short-lived home stand tomorrow night in a battle for points against the St. Louis Blues.

In the Pacific Division alone, three teams share 22 points, including the Stars, the Kings and the Sharks. In the conference, only two points separate eight teams who’re sitting as high as third place, held by the Canucks, and 10th, held by the Stars.

The Blues astounded hockey fans across the league last season with a playoff run that lead to the Western Conference semifinals, where the team fell 4-0 to the Stanley Cup-winning Kings. This season, however, has produced less-than stellar results for the Blues, who, though sitting in fourth place in the conference and second in the Central Division, hasn’t been able to set fire to the spark that started last season’s fire. The Blues are also coming off a 4-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers, who demolished the Stars on Thursday 5-1.

Chemistry continues to be an area of needed improvement for the Stars, and while the trade of Micheal Ryder and the return of Kari Lehtonen may have had an impact on Thursday’s game, changes on the ice cannot lead to the falling-apart of the few bonds the team has created thus far. Defense also must be an area of significant devotion, with the Stars sitting at a 2.95 goals allowed per game percentage. While the ability of the goalie in net does directly contribute to this number, no goalie can be successful without strong defensemen in front of him.

When analyzing the team’s statistics, initial indications are the game will not only be a close one, but an entertaining one also. The first puck drops at 2:00 p.m. and will be shown on Fox Sports Southwest.

Tags: Dallas Stars St. Louis Blues

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