NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, February 26th
(All times Eastern)
Dallas Stars (9-8-2) at Columbus Blue Jackets (5-12-2), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Dallas Stars hope to avoid their fourth loss in five
games when they visit the Columbus Blue Jackets for Tuesday's battle at
Dallas had its longest winning streak of the season earlier this month,
claiming four straight victories from Feb. 4-12, but the club is just 2-3-1 in
six games since. The Stars lost an overtime decision in Nashville on Monday
for their third setback in four games.
Roman Josi scored two goals, including a power-play tally 28 seconds into
overtime, to lift the Predators to a 5-4 come-from-behind triumph over the
Stars. Nashville rallied from a 4-2 second-period deficit to earn the win.
"We let them in and got them excited. We just needed to make sure we closed
them out," Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan said.
Matt Fraser netted his first career NHL marker and Loui Eriksson had a goal
and an assist for Dallas, which also received three assists from Michael
Ryder. Christopher Nilstorp finished with 26 saves in the loss.
With No. 1 netminder Kari Lehtonen sidelined due to a groin injury, Nilstorp
has started the last three games. Richard Bachman could get the call in
Lehtonen has been practicing and is considered questionable for Tuesday's
game, but it seems more likely he'll return later this week.
Dallas is 5-5-1 as the visiting team this season and will play its next two
games at home. The Stars host Edmonton on Thursday before welcoming St. Louis
The Blue Jackets, who are last in the NHL with 12 points, have lost two
straight and five of their last six games. Columbus turned in a valiant effort
Sunday in Chicago, but lost a 1-0 decision that allowed the Blackhawks to go
18 games into the season without a regulation loss. Corey Crawford stopped 28
shots to post a shutout for Chicago and Andrew Shaw scored the game's only
goal late in the second period.
Steve Mason stopped 26-of-27 shots for the Blue Jackets, who went 0-for-5 on
the power play to suffer their ninth straight loss in the series with Chicago.
"Our goaltender played really well for us and we played a good game, (but) the
power play was not good enough," Blue Jackets center Derick Brassard said.
"When you have six or seven chances and you lose a game 1-0, it was obviously
not good enough. The execution was not good."
Sunday's game was the final test of a 1-5-0 road trip for Columbus, which will
play five of its next six games on home ice. The Jackets are 3-4-2 as the host
this season compared to a 2-8-0 mark on the road.
The Blue Jackets are still without a handful of key players, including
defenseman Jack Johnson, who was placed on injured reserve Sunday with an
upper-body issue. Artem Anisimov is day-to-day with a head injury suffered
Thursday in Detroit and will likely miss a third straight game on Monday.
Dallas has won four of the last six meetings with the Blue Jackets overall and
seven of 11 in Columbus. The Blue Jackets did end a three-game home losing
streak against the Stars when they notched a 2-1 win at Nationwide Arena on
Jan. 28. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 24-of-25 shots for the Blue Jackets in that
02/26 10:30:49 ET