Tyler Seguin’s first game against his former Boston teammates is getting a lot of attention, but Stars coach Lindy Ruff and Bruins coach Claude Julien are more concerned with broader issues heading into tonight’s game TD Garden.
The Stars come into the game with points in five of their last six games (3-1-2), but they are in the middle of a road heavy schedule and they have had some bumpy times away from home this season. And Boston can be a tough place to play.
“I am more interested in the team’s challenge than I am in just Tyler’s challenge,” Ruff said. “It’s sometimes an emotional, tough moment when you are coming back to a team. He won a Cup with this team, he’s obviously got a lot of good friends obviously on the other side, and it’s not an easy game a lot of times. But I am more interested in how our team is going to play than individually looking at one guy.”
The Bruins have lost three of their last four games, so Julien is more concerned about the Stars and his team’s play than Seguin’s return.
“I think it’s more important that we do the scouting on their whole team and how they play,” Julien said. “So again, for us it’s us turning the page and we’ve got some players here that are coming back in our lineup and hopefully will help us be a little bit better than we were the last game.”
Nichushkin moving up
After scoring his first NHL goal and probably playing his best game of the season, Stars rookie Valeri Nichushkin is getting bumped up to the top line for tonight’s game against the Bruins. He’s expected to play right wing with center Tyler Seguin and left wing Jamie Benn.
“Obviously his play warranted where I put him. He played his best game by far last game,” said Ruff. “I think there was a point where the energy in his game was low, some of that was fatigue. I thought taking him out (healthy scratch Oct. 15) was a good thing to buy him a little bit of time. It’s all about the roller coaster ride that some young players go on. He’s on his way up and we hope we can keep him there, but there’s probably a guarantee that we will have to pick him up again. But by far and away our best skater and probably our best player in (the last) game.”
Eriksson in for Bruins
Bruins forward Loui Eriksson will be in the lineup tonight after missing the last five games due to a concussion. Eriksson, who will be facing his former Dallas teammates for the first time since being traded to Boston in July, is expected to play right wing on a line with center Patrice Bergeron and left wing Brad Marchand.
The Bruins will likely get defenseman Johnny Boychuk back tonight as well. He missed Saturday’s game against the New York Islanders with an undisclosed injury.
Who: Dallas Stars at Boston Bruins
Where: TD Garden
When: 6 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest Plus (Click here for channel listings)
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM
Projected Stars lineup
Jamie Benn –Tyler Seguin –Valeri Nichushkin
Ray Whitney – Cody Eakin – Alex Chiasson
Rich Peverley – Vernon Fiddler – Erik Cole
Antoine Roussel – Shawn Horcoff – Ryan Garbutt
Brenden Dillon – Stephane Robidas
Trevor Daley – Sergei Gonchar
Alex Goligoski – Jordie Benn
Kari Lehtonen (starter)
Projected Bruins lineup
Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Loui Eriksson
Carl Soderberg - Chris Kelly - Reilly Smith
Daniel Paille - Gregory Campbell - Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara - Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg - Dougie Hamilton
Torey Krug - Adam McQuaid
Tuukka Rask (starter)
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 DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.