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game preview

Blues at Stars preview

St. Louis goes for second win after seven-game losing streak, Bishop to start for Dallas

by Jeff Miller / NHL.com Correspondent

BLUES (35-26-4) at STARS (36-23-5)

2 p.m. ET; FS-SW, FS-MW, NHL.TV

 

The Game

The Dallas Stars and St. Louis Blues will try to boost their chances of qualifying for the Stanley Cup Playoffs when they play at American Airlines Center on Saturday.

The Stars, 3-4-1 in their past eight games following a five-game winning streak, hold the first wild card into the playoffs from the Western Conference. They entered Friday three points ahead of the Blues and Anaheim Ducks, and trailed the Minnesota Wild by two points for third place in the Central Division.

The Blues are 1-6-1 in their past eight games after going 6-2-0 in their previous eight.

The home team has won each of the first three games between the teams this season, including a 2-1 win by the Stars on Feb. 16.

 

Players to watch

Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko has eight points (five goals, three assists) in his past nine games. He has two goals and one assist in three games against the Stars this season.

Stars forward Tyler Seguin has five goals and two assists in a four-game point streak after having no points in his previous four games. He scored twice in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.

 

They said it

"Special teams are going to be a real important part of the game, and we'll have to be ready to go." -- Blues coach Mike Yeo

"Most coaches are nuts. We'll change in a second. We look at twosomes; we don't look at threesomes. I know that this time of the year, if it's not working, don't sit on it." -- Stars coach Ken Hitchcock on midgame line changes

 

Blues projected lineup

Alexander Steen -- Ivan Barbashev -- Vladimir Tarasenko

Jaden Schwartz -- Brayden Schenn -- Dmitrij Jaskin

Nikita Soshnikov -- Vladimir Sobotka -- Tage Thompson

Scottie Upshall -- Kyle Brodziak -- Chris Thorburn

Jay Bouwmeester -- Alex Pietrangelo

Carl Gunnarsson -- Colton Parayko

Vince Dunn -- Jordan Schmaltz

Carter Hutton

Jake Allen

Scratched: Patrik Berglund, Oskar Sundqvist

Injured: Joel Edmundson (broken right forearm), Robert Bortuzzo (knee)

 

Stars projected lineup

Jamie Benn -- Tyler Seguin -- Alexander Radulov

Devin Shore -- Mattias Janmark -- Jason Spezza

Antoine Roussel -- Radek Faksa -- Tyler Pitlick

Remi Elie -- Jason Dickinson -- Brett Ritchie

Esa Lindell -- John Klingberg

Dan Hamhuis -- Greg Pateryn

Marc Methot -- Stephen Johns

Ben Bishop

Kari Lehtonen

Scratched: Gemel Smith, Julius Honka

Injured: Martin Hanzal (back)

 

Status report

This is the start of a four-game road trip for the Blues; the next three games are in California. … The Stars are 1-1-1 on a five-game homestand that concludes Monday against the Ottawa Senators. Dallas reunited Benn, Seguin and Radulov on the top line against Tampa Bay, and the three combined for two goals and three assists.

 

Stat pack

Hutton leads the NHL in goals-against average (1.99) and save percentage (.935) among goaltenders who've played at least 15 games. St. Louis is 28-6-2 when scoring first. … The Stars trailed 4-2 going into the third period against Tampa Bay but earned a point with the overtime loss. Dallas has an NHL-low four points (1-18-2) when trailing after two periods.

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