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At the Rink: Senators at Stars

by Steve Hunt
DALLAS – Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson seeks his third straight shutout as Ottawa faces the Dallas Stars on Tuesday at American Airlines Center (8:30 p.m. ET; RDS, TSN5, FS-SW+).

Ottawa (10-5-5) defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 4-0 on Saturday at Canadian Tire Centre. On Thursday, the Senators defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0. Anderson stopped 51 shots in the two shutouts. He is starting his fifth consecutive game.

The Senators will look very similar to the team that won Saturday. There is one change among the forward lines as Shane Prince, a healthy scratch on Saturday, returns to the left side of a line centered by Mika Zibanejad with Mark Stone on the right. Matt Puempel, who had played on that line against Philadelphia, was assigned to Binghamton of the American Hockey League on Monday.

One area of concern for Cameron is limiting the number of opportunities Dallas receives on the power play. The Stars have converted 27.7 percent of their power-play opportunities, second-best in the NHL.

“You’re going to take penalties. It’s the same as you’re going to give up chances. You can’t take the bad ones, like the lazy ones; the hook and the hold,” coach Dave Cameron said. “And when do it, you’re feeding a real good power play.”

Dallas, who leads the NHL with a 17-4-0 record, has won five straight, including a 3-0 win against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

Stars coach Lindy Ruff is keeping his forward lines intact from Saturday, but is shuffling his defensive pairs.

Jordie Benn, normally a third-pair defenseman alongside Jyrki Jokipakka, will move up and skate with Johnny Oduya. Jordie Benn, who missed the game on Saturday because of illness, is in for Jason Demers, who sustained a lower-body injury in the second period against the Sabres and did not return.

Demers participated in morning skate but left the ice early, so it appears the second pair will consist of Oduya and Benn with Jokipakka and Jamie Jamie Oleksiak forming the third pair.

Goalie Antti Niemi will start a second consecutive game for Dallas, his first back-to-back starts since Oct. 31 against the Anaheim Ducks and Nov. 2 at the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Dallas is in the second game of a three-game home stand and Ruff considers the Senators, currently second in the Atlantic Division, a formidable foe.

“Well, they’ve got good speed. They’ve got a top line that generates a lot,” Ruff said. “Hopefully we can create enough pressure to create the number of chances to get inside on. They’re giving up a lot of shots, but sometimes a lot of shots, if they’re not inside, don’t mean a lot anyways.”

Here are the projected lineups:


Mike HoffmanKyle TurrisBobby Ryan

Shane PrinceMika ZibanejadMark Stone

Milan MichalekJean-Gabriel PageauAlex Chiasson

Curtis LazarZack SmithChris Neil

Marc MethotErik Karlsson

Jared CowenCody Ceci

Mark BorowieckiChris Wideman

Craig Anderson

Chris Driedger

Scratched: Colin Greening, Michael Kostka

Injured: Andrew Hammond (head), Clarke MacArthur (concussion), Chris Phillips (back), Patrick Wiercioch (upper body)


Jamie BennTyler SeguinPatrick Sharp

Mattias JanmarkJason SpezzaPatrick Eaves

Antoine RousselCody EakinValeri Nichushkin

Colton SceviourVernon FiddlerAles Hemsky

Alex GoligoskiJohn Klingberg

Johnny OduyaJordie Benn

Jyrki JokipakkaJamie Oleksiak

Kari Lehtonen

Antti Niemi

Scratched: Travis Moen

Injured: Jason Demers (lower body)

Status report: Greening was recalled from Binghamton on Monday and is a likely scratch as Ottawa’s 13th forward. … Driedger was also recalled from the AHL on Monday while Kostka, a likely scratch for a second consecutive game, was recalled on Nov. 21. … Nemeth is still on a conditioning assignment with the Texas Stars (AHL) but will return to Dallas later this week.

Who’s hot: Karlsson ranks second among NHL defensemen with 22 points (17 assists), one behind Klingberg. … Ryan has an eight-game point streak. … Dallas leads the NHL with 31 third-period goals. … The Stars are allowing 2.38 goals per game, seventh-fewest in the League. … Seguin has a point in five straight games and in 13 of his past 14.

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