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Stars Gameday: 11/12/18 vs. CBJ

November 12, 2018, 7:18 AM ET [0 Comments]
Bill Meltzer
Dallas Stars Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Playing the third installment of a four-game homestand, Jim Montgomery's Dallas Stars (9-6-2) play host on Monday night to John Tortorella's Columbus Blue Jackets (9-6-2). Game time at the American Airlines Center is 7:30 p.m. CT. The game will be televised on Fox Sports Southwest.

This is the second and final meeting of the season between the inter-conference clubs, and the lone game in Dallas. On Nov. 6 in Columbus, the Blue Jackets got a power play goal from Anthony Duclair in the final minute of the opening period and never looked back as they went on to win by a 4-1 count. Markus Nutivaara and Nick Foligno helped open a 3-0 lead by the second intermission. After Jamie Benn's early third period power play marker broke up a shutout bid for two-time Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky (33 saves on 34 shots), Ryan Murray restored the three-goal cushion for the Blue Jackets.

Since that time, the Stars have gone 1-0-1 in the first two games of the current homestand. The Stars conquered the San Jose Sharks, 4-3, last Thursday before seeing leads of 3-1 and 4-3 slip away in the third period of a 5-4 overtime loss to the Nashville Predators on Saturday night. Tyler Pitlick (3rd), Tyler Seguin (5th), Jason Spezza (power play, 4th) and rookie Denis Gurianov (first NHL goal) tallied in an ultimately losing cause but the Stars salvaged a point while the Preds improved to a perfect 8-0-0 on the road.

Dallas enters play on Monday in fourth place in the Central Division, six points behind Nashville. If the season ended today, the Stars would be in the upper wildcard spot and play the Pacific Division leading Vancouver Canucks in the first round of the playoffs. Of course, the season is not even at the one-quarter pole yet so playoff talk is quite premature. Nevertheless, it is important for teams not to bury themselves into the standings by U.S. Thanksgiving, and the Stars are thus far avoiding that pitfall.

The Stars hope to have Alexander Radulov back in the lineup for Monday's game. He has missed 10 of the last 11 games due to a nagging lower-body injury. Prior to the injury, he was part of a nearly unstoppable trio with Benn and Seguin. In seven games played, Radulov has racked up 11 points (five goals, six assists). The Stars may also have forward Brett Ritchie (upper body inflammation and infection) back in the lineup for this game. Gurianov has been returned to the AHL's Texas Stars along with defenseman Dillon Heatherington.

The Dallas blueline, however, is still injury-riddled. Top-pairing defenseman John Klingberg (hand surgery) will be out for a month. The team recalled defenseman Ben Gleason over the weekend, and he played quite well in the Nashville game. Roman Polak (illness) is questionable for Monday's game. Marc Methot (lower body) is skating on his own but not yet involved in contact drills in practice. Connor Carrick (foot injury) and Stephen Johns ("post-traumatic headaches") remain off the ice.

With points in seven of their last 10 games (5-3-2), the Blue Jackets have taken over first place in the Metropolitan Division. The team, however, is coming off a 5-4 shootout loss to the New York Rangers on Saturday.
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