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Roussel 'questionable to doubtful' vs. Kings with illness

Hanzal and Methot skating, could begin practicing soon

by Mark Stepneski @StarsInsideEdge / Inside Edge

With the NHL All-Star break over, the Dallas Stars were back on the ice for practice Monday afternoon in Frisco. Defenseman John Klingberg and center Tyler Seguin, who played in Sunday's All-Star Game in Tampa, were on the ice. Forward Antoine Roussel was not.

Stars coach Ken Hitchcock said Roussel was "questionable to doubtful" for Tuesday's game against Los Angeles at American Airlines Center with a nasal infection.

"We'll see how he feels in the morning (Tuesday)," Hitchcock said. "He's not felt well the last couple of days, so we kept him off the ice. He's a day to day kind of thing. We'll see in the morning."

Hitchcock said he did not expect it to be a long-term issue, adding that if Roussel isn't ready to play Tuesday, then he should be good to go for Thursday's tilt at Arizona.

"It kind of went through us here on the break and he's one of the last guys to get it," Hitchcock said. "Hopefully, he's okay (Tuesday) and he can play. If not, then we'll wait and put him in against Arizona (Thursday)."

Video: Radulov on playing with Benn and Seguin

With Roussel not practicing, Devin Shore took his spot at left wing on the line with center Radek Faksa and Tyler Pitlick. Jason Spezza centered Gemel Smith and Brett Ritchie, and Jason Dickinson, recalled from the AHL on Monday, centered Remi Elie and Mattias Janmark. The top line of Jamie Benn, Seguin and Alexander Radulov stayed intact.

"The lines we practiced today with are the lines we'll go into the game with if Roussel can't play," Hitchcock said.

On blue line, Julius Honka skated on the third defense pair with Stephen Johns in Monday's practice, and Hitchcock said Honka likely would play Tuesday vs. the Kings. Honka, who has been a healthy scratch the last four games, played two games for the Texas Stars of the AHL over the weekend and was recalled on Monday.

"We'll probably look at bringing Honka in," Hitchcock said. "He's fresh and he played very well in the second game in Texas, so we'll probably look at bringing him in and see how he is energy-wise."

Dillon Heatherington, who also played in the AHL this weekend and was recalled Monday, would be the scratch on defense if Honka plays.

Hitchcock said Ben Bishop would start in goal Tuesday against the Kings and that Kari Lehtonen will play Thursday in Arizona.

 

Hanzal, Methot updates

Center Martin Hanzal and defenseman Marc Methot did not practice Monday. Both are skating on their own. Hanzal has missed the last two games with a pulled muscle. Methot has missed 34 of the last 35 games due to a knee injury.

"Hanzal and Methot have been skating for five days now, so they are well on their way," Hitchcock said. "They'll skate again tomorrow, and they are one step away from joining us. The next time we can probably evaluate them is when they join us for practice, which is hopefully in the not too distant future."

 

Monday's practice lineup

Here's how the Stars lined up in Monday's practice

Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Alexander Radulov 
Gemel Smith - Jason Spezza - Brett Ritchie 
Devin Shore - Radek Faksa - Tyler Pitlick 
Remi Elie - Jason Dickinson - Mattias Janmark

Esa Lindell - John Klingberg 
Dan Hamhuis - Greg Pateryn 
Stephen Johns - Julius Honka/Dillon Heatherington

Ben Bishop 
Kari Lehtonen

Not practicing: Antoine Roussel (nasal infection), Martin Hanzal (pulled muscle), Marc Methot (knee)

This story was not subject to approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.

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