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Dallas Stars Get Reinforcements

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Cody Eakin is activated off of IR and Esa Lindell returns to the Texas Stars.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-St. Louis Blues at Dallas Stars Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Stars are getting some help. For the first time in a while, the Stars have some positive news on the horizon.

Cody Eakin was activated off of IR this afternoon and is expected to be in the lineup tonight. With the move, the Stars made another subsequent roster change: they sent defenseman Esa Lindell back to the Texas Stars of the AHL.

The move will help clear up a bit of the logjam Dallas has carried on the blueline since the start of the season when they kept 8 defensemen on the roster out of training camp. Instead of having two blueliners in the press box each night, the Stars will get to have a more traditional roster (at least for now).

The Stars had an optional morning skate this morning, so we’ll have to wait to see where Lindy Ruff decides to put Eakin in the lineup. Similarly to Jason Spezza playing third line wing, it would not be surprising to see Eakin get eased into game action on a lower line with easier minutes.

Kari Lehtonen was first off the ice at morning skate, so he is the presumed starter tonight.

While Dallas gets a step closer to healthier, with Patrick Sharp taking morning skate this morning without a no-contact jersey on, the Colorado Avalanche are not as lucky tonight. They’ll be without both Matt Duchene (concussion) and captain Gabriel Landeskog (lower body injury).

Semyon Varlamov is expected to be in net for the Avalanche. Varlamov has won his last 11 stars versus the Dallas Stars.