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Desert duel: Stars look for third consecutive win at Arizona

Ben Bishop will make his fifth straight start in net; Jamie Oleksiak back in on defense

by Mark Stepneski @StarsInsideEdge / Inside Edge

The Dallas Stars will look to make it two straight wins over the Coyotes and three consecutive victories overall when they play the back end of a home-and-home series with the Coyotes tonight in Arizona.

The Stars won the first game of the series, 3-1, in Dallas on Tuesday night, but it was far from a work of art. The Stars jumped out to a 2-0 lead but had to hold off the Coyotes over the second half of the game. The Stars improved to 3-3-0 on the season while the Coyotes remained winless at 0-5-1.

"Even though we won the game, we feel like we've got to make the adjustments," Stars coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We put those adjustments in place [Wednesday] morning with the meeting. We've got to make some adjustments in our game to get ready for what we anticipate will be another emotional game. Arizona played really hard. They are desperate, and they want to get their first win. The coach called them out (after a 6-2 loss to Boston), and the players responded."

As for tonight's lineup, Ben Bishop will make his fifth straight start in goal. Bishop is 3-1-0 with a 1.49 goals against average and .944 save percentage.

Video: Pregame: DAL at ARI

On defense, Jamie Oleksiak will be back in the lineup after being a scratch the past two games, and Julius Honka will come out after playing the past four games. The expected defense pairs are Esa Lindell-John Klingberg, Marc Methot-Oleksiak, and Dan Hamhuis-Stephen Johns.

The Stars held an optional skate this morning, so there were no line rushes. Hitchcock did say he could do some shuffling around of his right wings, except for the top line where Alexander Radulov has played every game with Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin.

"We'll leave that line the same," Hitchcock said. "We'll see how the other lines look. We just need to get more energy down the line from that position. We'll see."

In Wednesday's practice, Devin Shore played right wing on the line with Jason Spezza and Mattias Janmark and Tyler Pitlick was on the right wing with Remi Elie and Martin Hanzal. It's not clear if that's what Hitchcock will start with tonight, or if he'll go with the lines from last game and then make adjustments.


Coyotes Watch

Adin Hill will make a second straight start for the Coyotes tonight. He was solid in his NHL debut Tuesday, stopping 31 of 33 shots in the 3-1 loss to the Stars at American Airlines Center. Forward Brad Richardson, who missed Tuesday's game with a lower-body injury, remains day to day as does goaltender Antti Raanta. The Coyotes are looking for their first win of the season. Their 0-5-1 start is the worst in franchise history.


Tonight's Game

Who: Dallas Stars at Arizona Coyotes 
Where: Gila River Arena 
When: 9 p.m. 
TV: Fox Sports Southwest 
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM


Stars Projected Lineup

Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Alexander Radulov 
Mattias Janmark - Jason Spezza - Brett Ritchie 
Remi Elie - Martin Hanzal - Devin Shore 
Antoine Roussel - Radek Faksa - Tyler Pitlick

Esa Lindell - John Klingberg 
Marc Methot - Jamie Oleksiak 
Dan Hamhuis - Stephen Johns

Ben Bishop  
Kari Lehtonen

Scratched: Julius Honka, Greg Pateryn, Gemel Smith 
Injured: None


Coyotes Projected Lineup

Max Domi - Derek Stepan - Clayton Keller 
Anthony Duclair - Christian Dvorak - Christian Fischer 
Lawson Crouse - Nick Cousins - Tobias Rieder 
Zac Rinaldo - Mario Kempe - Jordan Martinook

Oliver Ekman-Larsson - Niklas Hjalmarsson 
Alex Goligoski - Jason Demers 
Kevin Connauton - Luke Schenn

Adin Hill 
Louis Domingue

Scratched: Adam Clendening 
Injured: Brad Richardson (lower body), Antti Raanta (lower body), Jakob Chychrun (knee) and Brendan Perlini (upper body)

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 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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