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Kings seek season sweep against Stars

Lucic, Kopitar have led Los Angeles to two wins; Dallas looks to keep first place in Central

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

STARS (47-22-9) at KINGS (46-26-5)

TV: 4:00 p.m. ET; SN1, FS-SW, FS-W, NHL.TV

Season series: The Los Angeles Kings will try to complete a three-game sweep of the Dallas Stars. Milan Lucic's third-period goal gave Los Angeles a 3-2 win at Staples Center on Jan. 19, and Anze Kopitar had a goal and an assist in a 5-2 victory at American Airlines Center on March 15.

Stars team scope: Dallas, which is trying to hold off the St. Louis Blues for first place in the Central Division, practiced at home before flying to the West Coast for a weekend back-to-back series against the Kings and Anaheim Ducks. "We know it's going to be a heavy game," coach Lindy Ruff told the Stars website when asked about playing the Kings. "There will be a lot of battles on the walls. I feel it's going to be a 3-2 game if we play well. The chances will be down. That's just the way they play. They are heavy on the walls, and they don't put very many pucks in the middle of the ice." Defenseman John Klingberg had a maintenance day and didn't practice. Defenseman Kris Russell (lower body) and forward Brett Ritchie (lower body) won't make the trip; however, Ruff said he's hopeful Russell, who has missed five games, will be able to play one of the Stars' final two games. First-line center Tyler Seguin, out since sustaining a cut to his Achilles tendon on March 17, could skate Sunday or Monday, though Ruff said he doesn't expect him to play before the end of the regular season.

Kings team scope: Goalie Jonathan Quick left the ice first after practice Friday and is expected to start. Forward Kris Versteeg, who hasn't played since March 17 because of a foot injury, skated at practice and could return. With the Kings already in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, coach Darryl Sutter said his biggest objective is to keep his players sharp as they battle for first place in the Pacific Division. "Just focus on the individual part of it and keep the X and O's in place," he told LA Kings Insider when asked about what he's focused on. "I think the veteran group, the leadership part of it, has been really sending the same message, trying to get guys to make sure they're playing as well as they can."

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