With just four games remaining until the break and the Dallas Stars riding a two-game losing streak, desperately chasing those ahead of them, befuddling word comes this afternoon from Anaheim via Mike Heika.
Dan Ellis is off the ice first for the Stars this morning, so it looks like Ellis vs. Jonas Hiller in Anaheim tonight.— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) February 1, 2014
To which you might cynically and immediately reply, "You play the Devils, the team that takes the fewest shots in the league and doesn't score, and use Kari but then turn around in the most hostile, unforgiving environment in the NHL this season at Honda Center and throw Dan Ellis to the league's second most prolific offense..."
And you might use some colorful language in there as well and if you were typing it you might add an extra question mark or three to really make your reaction clear.
We don't know what's going on there, though. We don't know what Kari Lehtonen has said or done since leaving the ice Thursday. We don't know what Mike Valley told Ruff. We don't know if Ellis' victory against Anaheim earlier in the season plays into it. Or if Ruff is just playing a hunch.
We also don't know if Ruff is messing wit us or not, because he did it once at home this season and the media jumped way offside after a morning skate with mixed signals. So keep that one in mind as well. In fact, the day he fooled everyone was... That big win over Anaheim at home where Ellis was the surprise starter.
Mind games. A hunch. Rest. Injury. Pick one.
There's been a lot of "Dallas is riding Kari too hard" talk lately, so that crowd might get to see the fruits of their arguments tonight. Just not where they probably wanted to with a five-game home stand now come and gone.
In other news it looks like Aaron Rome is the scratch on defense.
Stars defense pairs expected to be: Goligoski-Daley, Dillon-Jordie Benn, Connauton-Gonchar. Looks like Rome is your scratch.— Mike Heika (@MikeHeika) February 1, 2014
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