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Stars-Wild Preview

by Mark Stepneski / Dallas Stars

Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars

Saturday, November 14

7:00 p.m.

TV: Fox Sports Southwest Plus

Radio: The Ticket 1310 AM/96.7 FM

The Stars (13-4-0) won 6-3 over Winnipeg Thursday at American Airlines Center. Jamie Benn’s power-play goal with 5:55 remaining in the third period snapped a 3-3 tie and came on the heels of the Stars killing off a four-minute Winnipeg power play.

“I liked the way we killed that penalty. We stepped up our penalty kill there and got the job done,” Benn said. “[On the power play], just a lot of good work by the other four guys. I pretty much stand in front and tap them in.”

With Thursday’s win, the Stars set a franchise record for best 17-game start with 26 points.

The Stars have activated forward Patrick Eaves (lower body) from injured reserve. He is available to play, but it’s not clear if he’ll be in the lineup Saturday. Ales Hemsky (hip) and Jyrki Jokipakka (lower body) both had maintenance days on Friday.

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

Injuries: LW Travis Moen (upper body) is day to day. LW Curtis McKenzie (hip) is out.

The Wild (10-3-2) rallied from a 2-0 first-period deficit to win, 3-2, at Carolina Thursday. Jason Zucker’s second goal of the game, which came 3:50 into the extra period, sent Minnesota to its third straight win.

“Just stick with it,” Wild defenseman Ryan Suter told the team’s official site. “That's why you play 60 minutes—it's the old cliché, but that's why you do it. We didn't have it from the start, but if you stick with it long enough, it's going to turn.”

With Thursday’s win, the Wild tied the franchise record for best start after 15 games with 22 points.

Saturday’s game is the second of a four-game road trip for the Wild, who will finish the trip with games at Pittsburgh and Boston.

Injuries: D Marco Scandella (personal) is questionable. F Zach Parise (knee), F Justin Fontaine (knee) and F Tyler Graovac (sports hernia) are out.

*This is the first of five meetings between the Stars and Wild this season.

*The Stars were 1-3-1 (3 points) vs. the Wild last season.

*The Wild were 4-1-0 (8 points) vs. the Stars last season.

*The Stars are 1-1-0 vs. the Central Division.

*The Wild are 4-2-1 vs. the Central Division.

*The Stars are 6-2-0 at home.

*The Wild are 3-2-2 on the road.

*The Stars are tied for the league lead in scoring at 3.65 goals per game.

*The Wild rank sixth in scoring at 3.07 goals per game.

*The Stars rank 16th in goals against at 2.65 per game.

*The Wild are tied for 17th in goals against at 2.67 per game.

*The Stars power play ranks second at 30.2 percent.

*Minnesota’s power play is 15th at 19.2 percent.

*The Wild have been shorthanded two times or fewer in 11 of their 15 games.

*The Wild rank seventh in faceoff percentage (51.1 percent).

*The Stars rank 18th in faceoff percentage (49.7 percent).

*Stars center Tyler Seguin is tied for first in the NHL with 25 points (9 goals, 16 assists). Stars captain Jamie Benn is third with 22 points (11 goals, 11 assists). Stars defenseman John Klingberg is tied for sixth with 17 points (3 goals, 14 assists).

*Mikko Koivu (3 goals, 11 assists) and Ryan Suter (2 goals, 12 assists) co-lead Minnesota with 14 points.

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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