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Preview: Stars at Oilers

Edmonton home after five-game trip; injury-plagued Dallas tries to build on win at Calgary

by Derek Van Diest / NHL.com Correspondent

STARS (5-6-3) at OILERS (9-4-1)

9 p.m. ET; SNW, FS-SW, NHL.TV

 
Stars team scope

Coach Lindy Ruff would not reveal any lineup changes for the Dallas Stars in the second of back-to-back games. Dallas is without six forwards (Cody Eakin, Patrick Sharp, Ales Hemsky, Jiri Hudler, Jason Spezza and Mattias Janmark) because of injury or illness, but the Stars defeated the Calgary Flames 4-2 on Thursday in the third of a five-game road trip. They lost 8-2 at the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday. "You have to get the job done, you have to look at the personnel you've got and you have to make it work," Ruff said. "You still have games to win and the personnel you've got has to play real well." Forward Jamie Benn scored two goals, including the game-winner, in the victory against Calgary to end a nine-game scoreless streak. "[The win] was pretty big after, obviously, a tough game in Winnipeg, a pretty embarrassing one," Benn said. "It was nice to get back out there and find a way to win." The Stars are 1-1-1 on the trip, which concludes Sunday at the Vancouver Canucks. "We have a lot of young guys in there that are starting to play bigger roles and our veteran guys have to step and be better too," Benn said. "We're coming together as a team and trying to find different ways to win. And here we are again right back into it against a good team here in Edmonton."

Video: DAL@CGY: Benn fakes, finishes with slick backhand
 
Oilers team scope

The Edmonton Oilers return home after going 2-2-1 on a five-game road trip against Eastern Conference teams. Edmonton won five of six games prior to the trip. "I thought we had a good road trip, but it could have been a lot better than it was," forward Patrick Maroon said. "We made some mental errors that cost us some games. It's always good to get on the road and gel with some of the guys, go to dinner with some of the guys. We're home now and now we have to find a way to win at home and make teams that come in here not want to play us. We have to play our game and jump on them quick tonight." Maroon was promoted to the top line during the trip; he has three goals and two assists in four games playing with center Connor McDavid, who has five goals and 17 points in 14 games this season, and Jordan Eberle. "He is an elite player in this league and everybody knows what he can do with the puck at full speed," Maroon said of McDavid. "[Jordan Eberle] is a good linemate too. Those two work [well] together and for me, I'm just, honestly, trying to go to the net hard, trying to go to the front of the net, create some space and maybe that's why I'm having success."

 Video: EDM@PIT: Maroon buries McDavid's perfect feed
 
Stars projected lineup

Jamie Benn -- Radek Faksa -- Lauri Korpikoski

Antoine Roussel -- Tyler Seguin -- Patrick Eaves

Curtis McKenzie -- Devin Shore -- Brett Ritchie

Gemel Smith -- Justin Dowling -- Adam Cracknell

Dan Hamhuis -- John Klingberg

Johnny Oduya -- Stephen Johns

Jamie Oleksiak -- Jordie Benn

Kari Lehtonen

Antti Niemi

Scratched: Patrik Nemeth, Esa Lindell

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

 
Oilers projected lineup

Patrick Maroon -- Connor McDavid -- Jordan Eberle

Benoit Pouliot -- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins -- Jesse Puljujarvi

Milan Lucic -- Leon Draisaitl -- Tyler Pitlick

Anton Lander -- Mark Letestu -- Anton Slepyshev

Oscar Klefbom -- Adam Larsson

Andrej Sekera -- Matthew Benning

Darnell Nurse -- Eric Gryba

Cam Talbot

Jonas Gustavsson

Scratched: Dillon Simpson, Taylor Beck

Injured: Drake Caggiula (hip), Matt Hendricks (lower body), Iiro Pakarinen (knee), Brandon Davidson (upper body), Mark Fayne (lower body), Kris Russell (lower body), Zack Kassian (lower body).

 

Status report

Lehtonen is expected to start after making 29 saves in the win at Calgary. He and Antti Niemi have split the games this season, each playing in eight … Goaltender Cam Talbot has started every home game for the Oilers this season. The only game Talbot has not played was a 2-1 victory at the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday, when Jonas Gustavsson made 22 saves for his first win with the Oilers.

Who's hot

Jamie Benn has two goals and one assist in his past three games. Seguin has two goals and an assist in his past three games. … McDavid has four assists in his past two games. Maroon has two goals and two assists in his past three games.

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