The infusion of healthy bodies the Stars were hoping for this week is not going to happen. Word out of Frisco today is that when the Dallas Stars face the Ottawa Senators on Thursday and the New York Islanders on Saturday they will still be without their captain Brenden Morrow and defenseman Trevor Daley.
That will leave the Stars short Lehtonen, Morrow, Alex Goligoski, Daley and Adam Burish through December 7th. They start a big five game road trip on the 8th.
The Daley absence is particularly disturbing when you look at what happened in the Colorado game. I don't want to scoop Josh and his scoring chance post but the Grossman and Pardy pairing were -7 at even strength against the Avalanche, and Colorado only had 10 true scoring chances in the game by our count. You can do that math.
Brenden Morrow figured to be reinserted on the Ribeiro line (we can only guess) so Tomas Vincour will get at least two more games to find the net and turn his strong play into points. The Benn/Eriksson/Ryder trio should remain intact, though Ryder is also nursing a leg injury that requires a huge tape job just to get him out on the ice, Coach Gulutzan told media recently, which is probably why he did not practice today nor participate in morning skates recently.
Morrow had an injection to help with his back on Monday and needs time to rehab it and get into practice before playing. Trevor Daley's back is also a problem and Mike Heika says he may need an injection as well.
Jamie Benn and Vernon Fiddler also missed practice today.
The bottom line is that the Stars are stuck with what they had in the Colorado game, and they'll have to play a strong, disciplined team game for these next two in order to collect some points. A four day break (December 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th) awaits them that should allow Morrow, Daley, Fiddler and Ryder to get themselves completely right, or something close to it.