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Ruff Looks for Energy, Emotion as Stars Face Wild

by Mark Stepneski / Dallas Stars

The Dallas Stars didn’t skate this morning, but they did hold a meeting for about 15 minutes or so at American Airlines Center as they prepare to take on the Minnesota Wild in a key game tonight.

The Stars enter the game with just one win in their last ten games (1-8-1) and need two points keep from falling farther behind in the playoff race. The Stars are nine points behind Minnesota, which currently sits in the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

“I called the meeting. It was good,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “I’ve been through stretches like this and it’s believing in your system, trusting in your system, it’s being able to trust the guy next to you. The two words I look for and I want the players to dig down and grab are energy and emotion. I want to see energy and emotion tonight. And when the game’s over, I want them to be proud of the effort they put in and we’ll take the result after that.”

On the lineup front, Ruff said Valeri Nichushkin, who has been a healthy scratch the last two games, will be back in the lineup tonight. There is no word on any other lineup changes. Ruff declined to reveal his goaltender plan for tonight.

Minnesota will go with the same lineup as Saturday’s game. Darcy Kuemper will get the start in goal again.

Tuesday’s game

Who: Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars
Where: American Airlines Center
When: 7:00 p.m.
TV: NBC Sports Network
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

Stars projected lineup

Jamie BennTyler SeguinErik Cole
Antoine RousselCody EakinRyan Garbutt
Ray WhitneyVernon FiddlerAlex Chiasson
Shawn HorcoffRich PeverleyValeri Nichushkin

Alex GoligoskiTrevor Daley
Kevin Connauton/Jordie BennBrenden Dillon
Aaron RomeSergei Gonchar

Kari Lehtonen
Dan Ellis

Wild projected lineup

Nino Niederreiter – Mikael Granlund – Jason Pominville
Dany Heatley – Charlie Coyle – Jason Zucker
Matt Cooke – Kyle Brodziak – Justin Fontaine
Stephane Veilleux – Erik Haula – Torrey Mitchell

Ryan Suter – Jonas Brodin
Marco Scandella – Nate Prosser
Keith Ballard – Clayton Stoner

Darcy Kuemper
Johan Gustafsson

This story was not subject to the 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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