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Kings up against offensive juggernaut in Dallas

by Alex Kinkopf / Los Angeles Kings


TEXAS TRIP: Tonight marks the second of three meetings with the Stars this season and the Kings’ lone trip to Dallas’ American Airlines Center. The Stars are playing the third of a five-game home stand where they’ve gone 1-0-1 thus far; they’re coming off of a 5-4 OT loss to the St. Louis Blues on Saturday. The Kings are finishing a two-game road trip; they’re coming off of a 5-0 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday night.

BACK-TO-BACK: Tonight will complete the 11th of 12 back-to-back sets on the Kings’ schedule this season. In the second game of two-in-two’s, they’ve been delightfully successful, posting an 8-1-1 record when playing their second game in 24 hours.

LINEUP: As is the norm on the second day of a back-to-back set, the Kings did not hold a morning skate in anticipation of tonight’s game, but a team meeting at their hotel instead. Andy Andreoff, Jamie McBain and Jhonas Enroth skated with assistant coaches to get some work in, and are tonight’s presumed healthy scratches. Expect the lines used Monday in Chicago to ring true tonight. Jonathan Quick is expected to start in goal.

FORWARDS

LUCIC – KOPITAR – VERSTEEG
KING – CARTER – TOFFOLI
PEARSON – LECAVALIER – BROWN
CLIFFORD – SHORE – LEWIS
(ANDREOFF)

DEFENSEMEN

SCUDERI – DOUGHTY
MUZZIN – MARTINEZ
MCNABB – SCHENN
(MCBAIN)

GOALTENDERS

QUICK
(ENROTH)

THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the Kings’ previous meeting with the Stars this season on January 19 at STAPLES Center, they beat Dallas 3-2. The teams combined for four goals in the opening period, Vincent Lecavalier and Drew Doughty scoring for the Kings, and Milan Lucic netted the game-winner with 13:43 left to play in regulation. Anze Kopitar led the Kings in points scored (2A), Jonathan Quick made 27 saves on 29 shots faced.

STAR-STRUCK: Dallas boasts two of the NHL’s top-three scorers in Jamie Benn (34G, 33A) and Tyler Seguin (33G, 39A). Benn (77 PTS) ranks second in the league, Seguin (72 PTS) third. Neither player recorded a point against the Kings in the teams’ first meeting on January 19. Benn, though, has six points (2G, 4A) in his last four games, Seguin has four (1G, 3A) in his last two. Dallas brings the NHL’s best offense into the night, averaging 3.21 goals per game, while the Kings carry the league’s best defense into the affair, allowing just 2.24 goals per game.

THE AAC: Dallas’ American Airlines Center will be the 28th of 29 buildings the Kings visit this season, Minnesota’s Xcel Energy Center will be the last on the tour when they visit the Wild on March 22. The Kings’ 20-11-3 mark away from STAPLES Center this season is good for 5th-best in the NHL, third in the Western Conference. The Kings went 1-1-0 in two visits to Dallas last season, they’re 4-3-1 on the road against the Stars dating back to the start of the 2011-’12 campaign.

WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch the ‘Kings Live’ pregame show at 5:00 PM PST on Fox Sports West, followed with Nick Nickson and Jim Fox on the live play-by-play call from the American Airlines Center for puck drop just after 5:30. As always, you can listen to Jon Rosen and Daryl Evans call the action over the radio airwaves on AM 790 KABC.

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