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Stars place Gonchar on injured reserve, activate Rome

by Steve Hunt / NHL.com

DALLAS -- With Dallas Stars veteran defenseman Sergei Gonchar going on injured reserve with concussion-like symptoms, coach Lindy Ruff will plug in Aaron Rome, who has played in just three games this season, against the Nashville Predators on Friday at American Airlines Center.

Rome was activated from injured reserve earlier Friday.

"[Gonchar] is still not feeling quite right so we've got to get him through that, and when we do he'll start to exercise again," Ruff said of Gonchar, who last played Dec. 21.

Rome last played Dec. 16 against the Colorado Avalanche but has missed Dallas' past four games with a lower-body injury.

"I've played a few games and I've played on some good teams, so it's just about getting back in and getting comfortable and playing and being urgent," Rome said. "I want to be bringing an element that can help the team and fit in seamlessly."

Kari Lehtonen will start in net for the Stars for a fourth consecutive game.

Nashville carries a four-game winless streak to Dallas but Predators coach Barry Trotz sees the recent holiday break as a good thing for his club.

"I think it's a break that the whole League needs," Trotz said. "Everybody's putting a lot of demands on all the players, playing every second day with the travel. It's a welcome break no matter if you're winning, losing."

Carter Hutton will be the starter in net for Nashville after playing just six minutes in a 6-2 loss to the Boston Bruins on Monday.

Trotz did make one change to his lines during the morning skate, moving Gabriel Bourque from the first line to the second line where he will skate alongside Matt Cullen and Viktor Stalberg. Colin Wilson likely replaces Bourque on Nashville's top line alongside Matt Fisher and Patric Hornqvist.

Here are the projected lineups:

PREDATORS

Colin Wilson - Mike Fisher - Patric Hornqvist

Gabriel Bourque - Matt Cullen - Viktor Stalberg

Nick Spaling - David Legwand - Craig Smith

Eric Nystrom - Paul Gaustad - Matt Hendricks

Shea Weber - Roman Josi

Mattias Ekholm - Kevin Klein

Seth Jones - Ryan Ellis

Carter Hutton

Marek Mazanec

Scratched: Victor Bartley, Rich Clune

Injured: Pekka Rinne (hip)

STARS

Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Valeri Nichushkin

Antoine Roussel - Cody Eakin - Ryan Garbutt

Erik Cole - Rich Peverley - Alex Chiasson

Shawn Horcoff - Vernon Fiddler - Ray Whitney

Alex Goligoski - Brenden Dillon

Aaron Rome - Jordie Benn

Kevin Connauton - Cameron Gaunce

Kari Lehtonen

Dan Ellis

Scratched: Dustin Jeffrey, Colton Sceviour

Injured: Trevor Daley (lower body), Sergei Gonchar (concussion symptoms), Stephane Robidas (leg)

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