The Dallas Stars
will be without veteran winger Radek Dvorak
as the club enters the back-end of a home-and-home series with the Calgary Flames
Dvorak, who missed three games in early March before returning for three, is battling ankle issues that will keep him out of the contest.
"What a warrior," coach Glen Gulutzan said. "Seventeen years in this League and getting shot up every night in the ankle to get through. He had some aggravation in the last game, so if we sit him here, that's four days."
Dvorak could return to the lineup as quickly as Wednesday in Edmonton, Gulutzan said.
"Maybe he can be ready for Edmonton," he said. "If not, we can go another two more and get a healthier player. Sixty-five percent when you have healthy bodies, it's easier to put a guy in that’s 100 and try to get Devo to 80."
Either Tom Wandell
or Ryan Garbutt
will draw into the lineup in Dvorak's absence.
Gulutzan is pleased with the impression Dvorak has left on his team.
"He's showing these guys what it takes to be a pro in the NHL," Gulutzan said. "I can't say enough about Dvorak. We have a young Czech kid, Tomas Vincour
, who has matured probably five years from just the six months he spent with Devo. What a pro. He's done everything you want of a veteran guy for mentorship for young players. He's an invaluable guy for our locker room."
Dvorak isn't the only player who may make an appearance against the Oilers.
The Stars could also have college signing Reilly Smith
on the ice as soon as Edmonton as well. Dallas signed the 20-year-old Sunday.
"He's got to do immigration, so I don't know how long that takes," Gulutzan said. "(Edmonton) is a possibility depending on how we're playing. Right now, the focus is on the group, not any individual. We want to make sure if we put him in, it's the right time and place to do it."
Smith, who is with the team in Calgary, had 30 goals and 48 points in 39 games with Miami University (Ohio) this season and was originally selected by the Stars in the third round (No. 69) in 2009.
Here's the projected lineup for the Stars:
- Mike Ribeiro
- Michael Ryder
- Jamie Benn
- Steve Ott
- Vernon Fiddler
- Tom Wandell
- Tom Wandell
- Adam Burish
- Stephane Robidas
- Adam Pardy
- Alex Goligoski