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Game Preview: Pens-Stars

by Michelle Crechiolo @PensInsideScoop / Penguins Team Reporter

The Penguins are in Dallas for the first of back-to-back road games.

MATCH: Penguins vs. Stars

TIMES: 8:30 p.m. EST

PLACE: American Airlines Center

TV: ROOT Sports

RADIO: 105.9 FM, the X

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

This is the second and final meeting between the teams this season. The Pens defeated the Stars, 6-2, at PPG Paints Arena on Dec. 1, ending Dallas' 4-game winning streak in the series between the teams … The Pens, who are 5-1-2 in their last 8 road games, will be looking to end a 3-game losing streak at American Airlines Arena … This game will feature a number of the league's top scorers. Sidney Crosby has tallied in each of his last 3 games and leads the NHL with 34 goals. Jamie Benn has 4 points (3G-1A) in his last 5 games against Pittsburgh, while Tyler Seguin has 8 points (6G-2A) in his last 10 games against the Pens … Matt Murray was the first goalie off for Pittsburgh and head coach Mike Sullivan confirmed that he will start. Right now he has 23 wins, and his next will tie Gary Inness for the Pens' rookie record for victories in a single season … Pittsburgh injuries: Trevor Daley (knee); Kris Letang (upper body); Olli Maatta  (hand); Bryan Rust  (upper-body); Conor Sheary  (upper-body)  … Dallas injuries: Adam Cracknell (lower body); Ales Hemsky (hip); Mattias Janmark (knee).

MORNING SKATE REPORT:

Kris Letang was not at morning skate, and Sullivan said afterward he stayed back in Pittsburgh with Bryan Rust. "Those two guys stayed back, so obviously we're not going to use Kris on this trip," Sullivan said. "We felt it was better that he stayed back and was able to get better rehab and quality skates with our skills coach back there."

Meanwhile, Conor Sheary was in a regular black jersey. "Conor was in a contact jersey today, so that's progress. And we'll see how he responds," Sullivan said. "The next step for him will be a game-time decision. We're not there yet, but I think we're getting close."

All other expected players were present. The Pens used the following lines and D-pairs…

Kunitz-Crosby-Guentzel

Wilson-Bonino-Kessel

Hagelin-Malkin-Hornqvist

Kuhnhackl-Cullen-Fehr

Dumoulin-Hainsey

Schultz-Gaunce

Cole-Ruhwedel

Sheary skated with Oleksy.

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