The Islanders come off of a 5-4 shootout loss to the Chicago Blackhawks to face the Dallas Stars. The Stars enter the game being a banged up team with a record of 15-9-1.
The Stars will start goaltender Andrew Raycroft, who has taken over the starting role recently after Kari Lehtonen substained an injury. Raycroft, the 31 year old netminder on his sixth NHL team, seems to have finally found the right home for him. Raycroft played earlier in his career with Boston, Toronto, Colorado, and Vancouver.
The Stars have had the offensive touch from Eric Nystrom lately, putting up points in 5 of his last 6 games.
The Islanders need to play the game they have been playing for the past week; putting pucks on net instead of just dumping the puck into the zone.
Although Jack Capuano has not announced tonight's starting goaltender, it would be assumed that Al Montoya will be the started. Montoya has been on fire this past week and there is absolutely no reason to sit him.
Coach Capuano should not have to scramble his lines for tonight's game looking back at last night's game. It is his defense he needs to be concerned about. It's usually the little things the defense does that cost the team and Jack needs to make sure the defense is on top of their game.
Tonight is meeting 1 of 2 this season between these two team and it should be an exciting one based on how these teams have been playing as of late.
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The worst has happened for Dallas Stars faithful. Kari Lehtonen is hurt.
Not just him, though. Joining Lehtonen (groin) in sick bay are Brenden Morrow (upper body), Trevor Daley (back), Adam Burish (broken hand), Vernon Fiddler (groin), and Alex Goligoski (thumb). Many significant contributors to the Dallas Stars' early success are out, and some are out for a long time.
Thankfully, reports show that Brenden Morrow should be back for Thursday against the Ottawa Senators. All of the above are expected to miss Monday's tilt in Colorado. Morrow won't be enough to get the Stars back on track, though. The Stars have had a rough go of i...
It took a thrilling shootout to solve an energetic tilt as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Dallas Stars on Black Friday, 4-3. Jonas Gustavsson made a beautiful desperation save to keep Mike Ribeiro's shootout attempt out of the net to seal the win.
The Stars found offense from a rising scoring source in their ranks, Eric Nystrom. The waiver-wire pickup got the Stars on the board first with a dazzling move off of a wonderful pass from Michael Ryder to make it 1-0.
Then the much maligned defense against the defense failed the Stars as defenseman Dion Phaneuf factored heavily into the next goals, shooting two shots towards the net. One...
Those were the words of Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan following a 6-0 destruction at the American Airlines Center on Tuesday. And how right those words are for a team that has lost its third straight game.
Kari Lehtonen (32) looks on helplessly as Tomas Fleischmann scores
"You start off 11-3 and teams are prepared to play you, they probably watch you a little closer," Gulutzan continued. Fair enough. The Stars started off as hot as any team in the NHL. Now, here is that added dose of adversity that every team goes through.
If you haven't seen the first goal Jamie Benn scored against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon, please, do so. Pay attention to the disgusting pass from Loui Eriksson. Eriksson's pass to Benn on the second one wasn't too shabby either. This Stars forward duo continues to develop into one of the most potent in the entire league.
Benn (left) and Eriksson (right) celebrate a 7-6 OT victory over Colorado
NHL fans have seen their fair share of dynamic duos throughout the years. Kurri and Gretzky, Crosby and Malkin, Forsberg and Gagne, Datsyuk and Zetterberg...the list goes on. But who would have thought of Eriksson and Benn b...
This Glen Gulutzan guy, man, what a find, huh? The Dallas Stars are the best team in the entire Western Conference through nine games.
Adam Burish fist pumps with glory after tying the game late vs. Phoenix (AP Photo)
The Dallas Stars look rejuvenated, and, dare I say it, better, since the departure of Brad Richards and the beginning of a new season. From an observer's standpoint, that loss to Minnesota to end their season last year is done and over with.
Tell me you thought the Dallas Stars would be the best team in the Western Conference after 9 games. Better than the Blackhawks, better than the new-look Kings, better than the alw...
Did you know that Dallas Stars Stars netminder Kari Lehtonen was the second overall pick in 2002 behind Rick Nash? Up until this year Lehtonen's career stats hovered around the .500 mark. With him as the starter, he made the playoffs once with the Atlanta Thrashers, and that run did not last long at all.
Kari Lehtonen makes the blocker save — AP Photo
Enter this year.
The 27-year-old native of Helsinki completely changed his offseason workout routine. He shed a few pounds, gained more muscle mass, and in the process, strengthened muscles that gave him injury fits in the past. Throughout his stint in Atlanta, he would miss...
Earlier this summer, I highlighted that the first two games of the Dallas Stars' season would be one of the toughest tests. A tough win, and a tough loss. By my indication, they made a statement and passed the test.
In the first game, Kari Lehtonen tended the nets and played out of his mind to the tune of a 2-1 victory. He made 26 saves on 27 shots, and the only Chicago goal came with less than a minute to play. He made several key stops to keep the Stars in it. Two of them came in succession against one Marian Hossa as he got his own rebound.
Some of the new guys factored in on the new game plan, which is aggressively defensive. Michael Ryder had three shots, and third-li...
I didn't realize that CSNChicago's Blackhawks column by Tracey Myers and Chris Boden was titled "Hawk Talk," so I had to change my blog title to "Hawks Thoughts." Let me know if you have any other suggestions as I'm not crazy about it at the moment.
Last year, the Chicago Blackhawks lost a grind-it-out battle against the Colorado Avalanche in OT from Paul Stastny's game winning goal in their season opener in Colorado. This year, the Blackhawks hope to avoid a similar fate tonight when they face off against Mike RiBeiro and the Dallas Stars.