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Preview: Stars at Blackhawks

Dallas forward Jason Spezza out with lower-body injury; goalie Scott Darling to start for Chicago

by Brian Hedger / Correspondent

STARS (4-5-2) at BLACKHAWKS (8-3-1) 

7 p.m. ET; TVA Sports, CSN-CH, FS-SW+, NHL.TV


Stars team scope 

The Dallas Stars will not have center Jason Spezza for the second game of the home-and-home set against the Chicago Blackhawks. Spezza sustained a lower-body injury during a 3-2 loss to Chicago at American Airlines Center on Saturday. He was injured during a power play late in the second period and didn't return. "He's going to miss a little bit of time," coach Lindy Ruff told the Stars website. "He won't play [Sunday]." The Stars, already missing five forwards because of injury, recalled center Justin Dowling from Texas of the American Hockey League and placed right wing Jiri Hudler (illness) on injured reserve. They begin a five-game road trip without Spezza, Hudler, former Blackhawks left wing Patrick Sharp (concussion), forward Mattias Janmark (knee), center Cody Eakin (knee) and forward Ales Hemsky (hip surgery). Goalie Kari Lehtonen is expected to start after Antti Niemi played the past three games.


Blackhawks team scope 

Goalie Scott Darling will make his first start since Oct. 22 against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Corey Crawford has played six straight games. Forward Andrew Desjardins is healthy after missing the first 12 games because of a lower-body injury but will be scratched. The Blackhawks have won five straight games and are in first place in the Central Division. They are 6-0-1 since a 3-2 loss at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Oct. 21. Center Artem Anisimov and right wing Patrick Kane are tied for the NHL scoring lead with 15 points apiece. Anisimov and left wing Richard Panik each has seven goals, tied with five others for second in the League. 


Stars projected lineup

Jamie Benn -- Tyler Seguin -- Patrick Eaves

Antoine Roussel -- Radek Faksa -- Lauri Korpikoski

Curtis McKenzie - Devin Shore -- Brett Ritchie  

Patrik Nemeth -- Gemel Smith -- Adam Cracknell  

Johnny Oduya -- Stephen Johns

Esa Lindell -- John Klingberg

Dan Hamhuis -- Jordie Benn  

Kari Lehtonen

Antti Niemi

Scratched: Jamie Oleksiak

Injured: Jason Spezza (lower body), Patrick Sharp (concussion), Mattias Janmark (knee), Cody Eakin (knee), Ales Hemsky (hip surgery), Jiri Hudler (illness)


Blackhawks projected lineup

Richard Panik -- Jonathan Toews -- Patrick Kane

Artemi Panarin -- Artem Anisimov -- Marian Hossa

Tyler Motte -- Marcus Kruger - Ryan Hartman

Dennis Rasmussen -- Nick Schmaltz -- Jordin Tootoo

Duncan Keith -- Brian Campbell

Gustav Forsling -- Niklas Hjalmarsson

Michal Kempny -- Brent Seabrook

Scott Darling

Corey Crawford 

Scratched: Vincent Hinostroza, Andrew Desjardins 

Injured: Trevor van Riemsdyk (upper body)

Status report 

Van Riemsdyk was placed on injured reserve Saturday, allowing the Blackhawks to avoid sending a player to Rockford of the AHL. … Hinostroza was scratched Saturday for the sixth time and second game in a row. … Rozsival was scratched for the second straight game after playing the previous four. … Sharp has missed seven games and remains under the NHL concussion protocol. … Hudler missed his second straight game and seventh this season because of a virus. … Nemeth has been scratched the past three games, and Oleksiak has been scratched in seven straight. … Neither team had a morning skate.

Who's hot

Kane had a goal and an assist against the Stars on Saturday, and has points in the past three games (two goals, four assists) … Johns, a former Blackhawks prospect, has points in three straight games (one goal, two assists).

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