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Stars-Devils Preview

by Mark Stepneski / Dallas Stars

New Jersey Devils at Dallas Stars

Saturday December 13, 2014
7:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

About the Stars

The Stars (10-13-5) haven’t played since Tuesday when they lost 5-2 to Winnipeg at American Airlines Center. It was the fourth loss in the last six games for the Stars (1-4-1).

“I thought it was the worst our defense has struggled, and that affects scoring chances, our puck movement and our transition game,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “I thought physically we got dominated down low.”

The Stars spent the three days since the loss trying to get their game back in order at practice.

“We’ve kind of stripped everything down. We’ve gone back to work,” said Stars forward Shawn Horcoff. “We’ve been challenged in here as players to respond with more intensity, with more smarts and more discipline. These three days were an example of how we are going to need to play going forward. We worked on deficiencies, and we worked on them every day.”

The NHL suspended Stars forward Ryan Garbutt three games for slew-footing Winnipeg’s Dustin Byfuglien in Tuesday’s game. Garbutt is eligible to return Dec. 21 at Edmonton.

Stars forward Travis Moen suffered an upper body injury in Tuesday’s game. He has missed the Stars’ past three practices and is out for Saturday.

Saturday’s game concludes a three-game homestand for the Stars.

Injuries: RW Ryan Garbutt (suspension), LW Travis Moen (upper body), RW Patrick Eaves (ankle), RW Valeri Nichushkin (hip) and D Patrik Nemeth (arm) are out.

About the Devils

The Devils (11-14-5) lost 4-1 at Philadelphia Thursday. The Devils, who have won just twice in their last ten games (2-5-3), were outshot 36-18 by the Flyers.

"I think we didn't do a good enough job getting pucks to the net," Devils coach Peter DeBoer said. "I thought we had [offensive] zone time; we got pucks to the point quite a bit. I thought our [defensemen] did not do a good enough job getting pucks to the net … that's why the lack of shots."

The Devils have registered just 34 shots on goal over their last two games.

Saturday’s game concludes a stretch of three straight on the road for the Devils, who have played 19 of their first 30 games away from home.

Cory Schneider is expected to start in goal for the Devils.

Injuries: Dainius Zubrus (leg), Travis Zajac (mumps), Adam Larsson (mumps), Patrik Elias (groin), Bryce Salvador (lower body), Ryane Clowe (head) are out.

Series Notes

*This is the second and final meeting between the Stars and Devils this season.

*The Stars won the first meeting, defeating the Devils 3-2 in a shootout in New Jersey on Oct. 24.

Statistical tidbits

*The Stars have allowed five goals in five of their past six games.

*The Devils have scored two goals or fewer in six of their past seven games.

*The Stars are 4-9 (44.4%) on the power play in their past three games.

*New Jersey has been shorthanded 113 times this season, second most in the league behind Winnipeg.

*The Stars are 5-6-5 at home.

*The Devils are 8-10-1 on the road.

*The Stars are 4-4-1 vs. the Eastern Conference.

*The Devils are 3-6-3 vs. the Western Conference.

*Tyler Seguin leads the Stars in goals (22) and points (36).

* Mike Cammalleri leads the Devils in goals (11), and Jaromir Jagr leads the Devils in points (17).

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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