The Dallas Stars are in Anaheim, California tonight to continue a three-game series against the Ducks. Anaheim took home the first win of the three, shutting out Dallas 4-0 Monday.
The night is sure to be an interesting one, with yesterday’s trades of Jaromir Jagr to Boston, Derek Roy to Vancouver and Thomas Vincour to Colorado. Without Jagr, and Brenden Morrow who the Stars traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins last week, the Stars will likely be lacking in a reliable goal-scorer and a strong leader.
Jamie Benn and Loui Eriksson will be Stars forwards to watch tonight, with Eriksson now leading the team in goals and Benn leading the team in overall points.
The Stars have also made roster moves too and from Texas, sending Reilly Smith and Francis Wathier to Texas and recalling Tom Wandell, Alex Chaisson, Colton Sceviour and Matt Fraser from the Austin-based AHL team, which currently sits in first place in the league.
Dallas’ defense will be under just as much pressure as it was Monday, and with no defensive acquisitions after yesterday’s events, it’s unlikely there will be a significant change in performance. The game will, again, come down to the strength of Kari Lehtonen, who has faced a total of 69 shots in the last two games.
Not only will the Ducks be fully amped up after Monday’s shutout victory, the team is also launching into a five-game home stand of its own, and now trails behind the Western Conference-leading Chicago Blackhawks by only four points.
Corey Perry, Bobby Ryan and Ryan Getzlaf will be Dallas’ biggest threats tonight, who together contributed two goals and three assists in Dallas on Monday. Ryan and Getzlaf were also responsible for Anaheim’s two shoot out goals in the Ducks’ only other victory against Dallas this season.
Regardless of who is in net for the Ducks tonight, scoring for Dallas will be a significant challenge. Viktor Fasth denied each of Dallas’ 27 attempts Monday, and Jonas Hiller has only allowed two goals for Dallas this season.
The first puck drops tonight at 9 p.m. at the Honda Center in Anaheim, and will be broadcast on Fox Sports Southwest.