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BLOG: Hemsky heating up, on verge of 500th point

by Ryan Frankson / Edmonton Oilers

After a slow start to the season, former Oilers winger Ales Hemsky is finding his groove as a member of the Dallas Stars.

The 31-year-old Czech spent his first 11 NHL seasons in Oil Country before being dealt to the Ottawa Senators at the 2014 trade deadline and signing with Dallas during the off-season.

Edmonton drafted Hemsky 13th overall in 2001 and the crafty RW went on to score 477 points in 652 games with the Oilers, plus 17 more in 24 games during the team's 2006 playoff run.

Hemsky picked up an assist in his first game with the Stars on October 9, but then endured a 14-game point drought before chipping in with four helpers in the team's last five games. He had his first multi-point game with his new team on November 20, recording a pair of assists in a 3-1 win over Arizona.

"I've been playing with (Jason) Spezza again the last four or five games… things have been going better and hopefully we can build from that," he said following Tuesday's morning skate. "I'm just trying to get better every day and help the team."

Since the Oilers had already played the Senators twice prior to last season's trade deadline, this will be Hemsky's first game against his former squad.

"It'll be probably weird, but probably better to play first here than in Edmonton," said Hemsky, who's also one point away from 500 in his NHL career. "I've been having a lot of chances, but none have gone in. Hopefully tonight I can get one."

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