If you missed it yesterday, Jason Spezza was placed on IR with an upper-body injury, which prompted a call-up for Radek Faksa. Although Spezza's injury is definitely a blow to the team, the good news is that Faksa has been great in Cedar Park as of late. Sean Shapiro has more on what's leading to that success.
Radek Faksa's go-to—and a bit clichéd—answer is that he's always focused on playing his own game.
It's a defensive-first style where Faksa kills penalties, wins faceoffs and uses his quick stick to disrupt passes.
"That's my game—defense first," Faksa said.
And while it may be true that Faksa is primarily concerned with having solid games defensively, he's been producing on offense at an impressive clip.
Radek Faksa has been putting up good numbers in the AHL recently: 22 points (12 goals, 10 assists) and a plus-12 rating in past 20 games.— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) February 5, 2016
Shapiro also points out that, in nine January games, Faksa had nine points (six goals, seven assists). Texas Stars coach Derek Laxdal had positive things to say about Faksa and his performance in the team's final game before the All-Star Break.
"I thought the best game he's played all year was the other night in Lake Erie," Texas Stars coach Derek Laxdal said. "I thought he was outstanding. We did a recap this morning and it was just a Radek Faksa video. ... It's not going to be long before he's a Dallas Star. If they had a spot for him, he'd be up there right now."
Here's hoping that tonight's tilt with Blackhawks means another highlight-reel game for Faksa. [Austin American-Statesman]
The Stars are clay, says Mike Heika, which means there's still some sculpting to be done before they're a finished work of art, er, hockey team. [SportsDayDFW]
Also from Heika: Tyler Seguin used the All-Star Break to shake off a sluggish January. [SportsDayDFW]
Sports Illustrated's Allan Muir counted down the 10 best Russian players in NHL history, and a very familiar face takes the No. 5 spot. [SI]
While speculating on what might happen with the Jets and Dustin Byfuglien, TSN's Frank Seravalli had this thought.
Few teams, though, have the salary cap flexibility and depth of defensive prospects (Esa Lindell, Julius Honka, Mattias Backman and more) to dangle like the Dallas Stars. Unlike the Kings, the Stars also still have their first-round pick in their arsenal.
You can prepare for tonight's game by reading up on red-hot Blackhawks rookie Artemi Panarin and how his productive season could mean more cap issues for Chicago. [Second City Hockey]
Mark Stepneski shared this fun fact about John Klingberg's OT winner against the Avs.
John Klingberg tidbit from NHL PR: pic.twitter.com/aZcmsUxNx8— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) February 5, 2016
SmartAsset released its second annual ranking of America's Best Hockey Towns. Shockingly, no cities in Texas made the cut. [SmartAsset]
Sorry to suggest that anyone spend time reading about the Ducks and their recent success, but over at Sports Illustrated, folks from the Department of Hockey Analytics explain what shot volume and quality can tell us. [SI]
KEVIN SPACEY!!!! pic.twitter.com/UXTXF8Wkrm— Jameson Olive (@JamesonCoop) February 5, 2016
Should we be worried that MLB Advanced Media will crack down on fan GIFs and videos? [Puck Daddy]
When you're an EBUG—that's emergency backup goaltender, by the way—life can be pretty stressful. [NHL]
Mike Babcock's understanding of concussion protocol could probably use some work. [Toronto Star]
Congratulations to John Scott and his wife Danielle, who gave birth to twin girls. [NHL]
And finally, Patrick Sharp shows off his (not-so) sharp shooting.