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Dallas Stars Daily Links: Stars Recall Radek Faksa Ahead of Showdown With Chicago

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The Stars face the Blackhawks tonight without Jason Spezza. Plus, would Dustin Byfuglien make sense in Dallas? And a look at Patrick Sharp's sharp-shooting efforts.

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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.

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]

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The Stars are back at the AAC tonight at 7 p.m. to take on the Blackhawks in what will undoubtedly be a lively game. [Stars Inside Edge]

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]

And speaking of Seguin, if The Star is to be trusted, he was never in much of a slump to begin with (photo courtesy of Wes).

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.

He has more to say about Big Buff, as well as the Oilers' playoffs chances, at the link. [TSN]

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.

Just as everyone suspected: New Jersey is currently in a playoff spot, while Montreal is not. Here's a look at the unlikely success of Lee Stempniak and the Devils. [Sportsnet]

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]

Flyers forward Sean Couturier will miss four weeks with a lower-body injury. [The Hockey News]

The strange but awesome friendship between Kevin Spacey and the Pantherswhose attendance is up 30%— continues.

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]

Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau continues to remind everyone who said he was too small to succeed that they were very, very wrong. [ESPN]

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.