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Dallas Stars Daily Links: December Home Stand Could Be the Gift that Gets the Stars Above .500

The Stars can get well quickly if they stay good at home. Plus, hot Flames to watch, and hot topics in goaltending.

NHL: Colorado Avalanche at Dallas Stars Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Out of crisis comes opportunity, and that’s been key to the Dallas Stars’ season so far, writes Mike Heika in The Dallas Morning News. As impact players get back up to speed in a roster unusually heavy with rookies and minor-leaguers, the Stars have a chance to ramp up their campaign at home, where they’ll play 10 of their next 13 games.

Part of that campaign will involve sorting through the recent road trip, in which the team brought home three of a possible eight points even as their play improved by many metrics:

"I thought the whole game in Colorado, we stayed with it," Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. "It was three periods of good hockey, and we were patient when we needed to be patient. We'd like to build off that."


"I think when you're out there playing as a five-man group, that's how you're supposed to be," said winger Patrick Eaves. "It's not forwards and D; we have to check together."

Tonight’s home game against the Calgary Flames will test the team early, Ruff says:

"This is going to be a real hard test," Ruff said of the meeting with the Flames. "We're coming off a tough grind on the road and coming against a team that has been really going well. I think we're fortunate that we've had two days here vs. just the one day. I'm pretty sure that everybody felt fairly awful [Sunday] and tried to get their legs going. I thought we skated pretty well today."

There’s more at Mike’s place. [SportsDayDFW]

The Stars and the Flames face off in the AAC at 7:30 p.m. Central time. Mark Stepneski has the official preview.

The Stars will need to contain Johnny Gaudreau, who nabbed a goal and an assist in his first game back from injury on Sunday. And keep an eye on Sam Bennett and former Star Alex Chiasson, who earned three points each in the Flames’ 8-3 blowout of the Anaheim Ducks.

Samwell9 provides a look at the Flames’ newfound organizational depth in goaltending. [Matchsticks and Gasoline]

HE LIVES: Jiri Hudler completed his first full practice in nearly a month yesterday.

And by the time you read this, Johnny Oduya may be back on the ice in Frisco.

Please mark this tweet from Owen Newkirk and use it to win future arguments.

The Ginger Ninja is about to become the latest Star to have a custom burger in his honor at the AAC.

Small sample-size issues? Or is Kari Lehtonen better this year than he may be getting credit for? Nick Mercadante of Hockey-Graphs posted this.

All quiet on the Central front: The #MurderDeathKill Division was out of action last night. Tonight’s a different story:

  • St. Louis Blues vs. Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m. Central time (this week’s free game on NHL.TV)
  • Nashville Predators vs. Colorado Avalanche, 7 p.m. Central time
  • Winnipeg Jets vs. Detroit Red Wings, 7 p.m. Central time
  • Chicago Blackhawks vs. Arizona Coyotes, 7:30 p.m. Central time

Patrick Maroon touched a couple of different third rails after Oilers teammate Connor McDavid was removed by concussion spotters during Sunday’s loss against the Wild. [SB Nation]

Ken Campbell takes another look at why the NHL’s concussion protocol is important – especially for star players like McJesus. [The Hockey News]

Elsewhere, Alex Prewitt looks at how Wild G Devan Dubnyk has used head-tracking to become a league leader in goal. [Sports Illustrated]

Former Stars goaltender Jhonas Enroth has been waived by the Toronto Maple Leafs after four starts – which goes to show how little slack non-core Leafs players are getting this season, writes Chris Johnston. [Sportsnet]

And eight NHL netminders, including Martin Brodeur, Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider, hold forth on some of the hot topics surrounding the position. [THN]

Four Stars prospects from as many different nations could be headed for the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Sean Shapiro has Team Sweden’s pre-tournament roster. [Wrong Side of the Red Line]

One big name is out of the WJC picture: Brandon Wheat Kings center Nolan Patrick. Hockey Canada has announced that the projected 2017 No. 1 overall has not been medically cleared to attend the National Junior Team selection camp.

New York Riveters forward Morgan Fritz-Ward has become the first player to retire early due to NWHL salary cuts. [The Ice Garden]

Finally: Another day, another Teddy Bear Toss video – this one from Sunday’s Hershey Bears-Syracuse Crunch game, in which the home team collected nearly 21,000 of its stuffed namesakes, including this larger-than-life model that had to be brought to ice level by his own brigade. Enjoy.