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At the Rink blog

Benn, Seguin look to lead Stars' turnaround

Friday, 01.10.2014 / 2:04 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer / 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

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2013-2014 At the Rink Blog
Benn, Seguin look to lead Stars' turnaround

NEW YORK -- That captain Jamie Benn and top scorer Tyler Seguin have carried the Dallas Stars offense this season is no secret. The pair's 36 combined goals account for 30 percent of the Stars' 120 non-shootout goals. That's a lot of accountability for two young players.

But with Dallas taking a four-game losing streak into its game Friday against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden, the pair is looking to help provide a spark for a team that has four goals in its past three games, including a 1-0 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Thursday.

"Throughout the year you're going to go through your ups and downs and your adversity here and there," Benn said. "We've hit that point right now. Things aren't going the way we want. It's about sticking together and getting through it as a team and finding a way to get out of it."

The high-scoring duo has combined for one goal and no assists in the past three games. So with a three-game road swing through the New York/New Jersey area concluding Friday, they want to recapture their scoring touch.

"My job is to produce and get the goals when we can't find a way," Seguin said. "I look at myself in the mirror. Last game, losing 1-0, you just need one goal. It's on me as well. That's a good thing about back-to-back [games]. If you lose the first one you can bounce right back."

The Stars took the unusual step of sandwiching a skate Friday morning between the back-to-back games. It was a move coach Lindy Ruff turned to in order to "wake up the brain." His hope is that the extra time on the ice might invigorate his desperate team.

Goaltender Kari Lehtonen did not participate in the skate, likely meaning he will start again after stopping 33 shots in the loss Thursday in Newark. Forward Antoine Roussel and defenseman Aaron Rome also will be inserted back in the Dallas lineup.

Meanwhile, the Rangers are coming off one of their biggest wins of the season, a 3-2 road victory against the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks. But by Friday morning the players already had moved on, especially after engine trouble on their plane home from Chicago forced them to get back late to New York.

"We're not in the position to savor wins," defenseman Ryan McDonagh said. "We had a long flight back and a late night to get in and had to recover. Right back at it this morning. It's about stringing wins together here and getting points. We're not in a position to go into cruise control at all."

The Rangers will ice the same lineup that won in Chicago, meaning Henrik Lundqvist will get the start in net and recent acquisition Daniel Carcillo will make his second appearance as a Ranger.

Here are the projected lines for the Stars and Rangers:

STARS

Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Rich Peverley

Erik Cole - Cody Eakin - Valeri Nichushkin

Ray Whitney - Alex Chiasson - Vernon Fiddler

Antoine Roussel - Shawn Horcoff - Ryan Garbutt

Trevor Daley - Alex Goligoski

Brenden Dillon - Jordie Benn

Aaron Rome - Sergei Gonchar

Kari Lehtonen

Dan Ellis

Scratched: Kevin Connauton, Dustin Jeffrey

Injured: Stephane Robidas (broken leg)

RANGERS

Rick Nash - Derek Stepan - Chris Kreider

Carl Hagelin - Brad Richards - Ryan Callahan

Benoit Pouliot - Derick Brassard - Mats Zuccarello

Daniel Carcillo - Brian Boyle - Dominic Moore

Dan Girardi - Ryan McDonagh

Anton Stralman - Marc Staal

Michael Del Zotto - John Moore

Henrik Lundqvist

Cam Talbot

Scratched: Justin Falk, J.T. Miller

Injured: Derek Dorsett (broken fibula)

Quote of the Day

It's pretty crazy, but believe me when I say we didn't draft these players with the mindset we had to because they had good hockey-playing dads. It just turned out that way. But we're certainly glad they're a part of our organization.

— Arizona Coyotes director of amateur scouting Tim Bernhardt regarding the coincidence that six of the organization's top prospects are sons of former NHL players