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Stars at Sharks preview

Pavelski to face former team for first time with Dallas; Marleau of San Jose to play 1,700th NHL game

by Ross McKeon / Independent Correspondent

STARS (26-14-4) at SHARKS (20-22-4)

10:30 p.m. ET; ESPN+, NBCSCA, FS-SW+, NHL.TV


The Game

Joe Pavelski will return to face his former team for the first time when the Dallas Stars visit the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center on Saturday.

The forward, who signed a three-year contract with the Stars on July 1, played 963 games through his first 13 NHL seasons with the Sharks and ranks second in San Jose history in goals (355) and third in assists (406) and points (761). He has 18 points (eight goals, 10 assists) in 44 games with Dallas this season.

The Stars look to extend their winning streak to seven games, which would equal their longest this season (Nov. 13-25) and mark the first season in Dallas/Minnesota North Stars history with multiple seven-game winning streaks.

Sharks forward Patrick Marleau will become the seventh to play 1,700 NHL games and the youngest (40 years, 118 days) in League history to do so. It also will be Marleau's 831st consecutive game under contract, which will move him past Stars forward Andrew Cogliano for sole possession of fifth place on the NHL all-time list.

San Jose is 3-1-1 in its past five games after going 2-9-2 in its previous 13 games. 


Players to watch

Stars defenseman Esa Lindell has eight assists in a five-game point streak.

Sharks center Joe Thornton will play his 1,613th NHL game to pass Ray Bourque for sole possession of 11th place all-time, two behind Larry Murphy (1,615) for 10th place.


They said it 

"Joe is very popular with the guys. We were in Anaheim the other night and won for Corey [Perry] and [Andrew Cogliano]. The guys feel good about that, and we're hoping to have the same result for Joe." -- Stars coach Rick Bowness on forward Joe Pavelski's return to San Jose

"We talked about [the Stars] goals-against, how stingy they are. They block a lot of shots. We talked about getting to the front of the net and really having to work for our offense tonight." -- Sharks coach Bob Boughner


Stars projected lineup

Jamie Benn -- Tyler Seguin -- Alexander Radulov

Denis Gurianov -- Roope Hintz -- Joe Pavelski

Andrew Cogliano -- Radek Faksa -- Blake Comeau

Mattias Janmark -- Jason Dickinson -- Joel Kiviranta

Jamie Oleksiak -- Miro Heiskanen

Esa Lindell -- Roman Polak

Andrej Sekera -- Taylor Fedun

Anton Khudobin

Ben Bishop

Scratched: Justin Dowling

Injured: Martin Hanzal (back), John Klingberg (lower body), Stephen Johns (head)

Suspended: Corey Perry


Sharks projected lineup

Evander Kane -- Tomas Hertl -- Kevin Labanc

Timo Meier -- Antti Suomela -- Patrick Marleau

Marcus Sorensen -- Joe Thornton -- Barclay Goodrow  

Antti Suomela -- Joel Kellman -- Melker Karlsson

Marc-Edouard Vlasic -- Erik Karlsson

Brenden Dillon -- Brent Burns

Radim Simek -- Mario Ferraro

Aaron Dell

Martin Jones

Scratched: Joachim Blichfeld, Tim Heed

Injured: Logan Couture (fractured ankle), Dalton Prout (upper body)


Status report

Perry will serve the fourth of a five-game suspension. … Dell will start for the fifth time in six games. … Klingberg skated Saturday and his status will be evaluated on Tuesday, Bowness said. … Khudobin will start for the third time in four games. 


Stat pack

Hintz has seven points (three goals, four assists) in his past six games. … Erik Karlsson has five points (one goal, four assists) in a four-game point streak.

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