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Stars-Jets Preview

by Mark Stepneski / Dallas Stars

Thursday, February 25

7:30 p.m.

TV: Fox Sports Southwest

Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

The Stars (38-17-6) snapped a three-game losing streak with Tuesday’s 5-3 victory in Winnipeg. The win pushed the Stars back into first place in the Central Division and Western Conference, one point ahead of Chicago.

“We want to win the division and have home advantage in the playoffs,” said defenseman John Klingberg, who had three assists. “It’s a tough stretch here, a lot of important games for us and we want to play as well as possible. There is some stuff we need to be better at going into the playoffs.”

The Stars improved to 6-1-1 against Central Division teams since the All-Star break.

The Stars held an optional practice Wednesday. Travis Moen, who has missed the past six games with a lower-body injury, took part in the practice. Stars coach Lindy Ruff said Moen is day to day. Patrick Eaves remains out due to illness.

Thursday’s game kicks off a three-game homestand for the Stars, who play nine of their next 12 games at American Airlines Center.

Injuries: LW Travis Moen (lower body) is day to day. RW Patrick Eaves (illness) is out.

The Jets (25-30-4) saw their losing streak hit four games (0-3-1) with Tuesdays’ 5-3 loss to the Stars. It was the seventh loss in the past ten games (3-6-1) for the Jets.

“As a team, our confidence is low right now,” said goaltender Ondrej Pavelec. “It’s about winning and losing. Sometimes we’re playing good, but we can’t win the game, sometimes we’re close, but close is not enough. But we’re still in the race, there’s going to be another game. We’re going to go to Dallas on the road, so we need the points.”

Center Bryan Little, who has missed the past two games with an upper-body injury, won’t travel to Dallas and will miss a third straight game.

Thursday’s game begins a two-game road trip for Winnipeg.

Injuries: C Bryan Little (upper body), D Mark Stuart and D Grant Clitsome (back) are out.

*This is the fifth and final meeting between the Stars and Jets this season.

*The Stars are 4-0-0 (8 points) in the season series.

*The Jets are 0-3-1 (1 point) in the season series.

*Nov. 12, at Dallas: Stars 6, Jets 3

*Jan. 7, at Dallas: Stars 2, Jets 1 (SO)

*Feb. 2, at Winnipeg: Stars 5, Jets 3

*Feb. 23, at Winnipeg: Stars 5, Jets 3

*The Stars are 7-3-1 since the All-Star break.

*The Jets are 3-6-1 since the break.

*The Stars are 14-5-2 vs. the Central Division.

*The Jets are 8-14-1 vs. the Central.

*The Stars are 3-4-0 in their past seven home games.

*The Jets are 0-2-1 in their past three games on the road but 4-2-1 over their past seven away from home.

*The Stars are 10-45 (22.6 percent) on the power play since the All-Star break.

*The Jets are 33-42 (78.6 percent) on the penalty kill since the All-Star break.

*The Stars are 30-39 (76.9 percent) on the penalty kill since the break.

*The Jets are 7-39 (17.9 percent) on the power play since the break.

*Stars captain Jamie Benn has registered points in eight of his nine games (4 goals, 7 assists).

*Jets captain Andrew Ladd has scored 7 goals in his past ten games.

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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