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Kris Russell Waiting on Work Visa, May Play Tonight as Dallas Stars Take On Nashville Predators

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The Stars newest defenseman acquisition is waiting on paperwork before knowing if he can join the lineup tonight in Nashville.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

On the second night of a back to back set, not much is known about how the Dallas Stars are going to approach tonight's game with the Nashville Predators.

Most of the team did not skate, but new defenseman Kris Russell did take the ice and is a possibility to play tonight. Russell has missed the last several games and has not played since February 12 with a lower body injury, but the reports leading up to the trade deadline indicated he could be back soon.

The main hangup appears to be a visa issue. Russell is a Canadian and playing on a Canadian team, so he didn't have a US work visa. There are expedited channels for the paperwork when it comes to people like professional athletes, but it does sometimes take a few days to work out.

If he plays, the usage is still very much up in the air.

Russell and Jamie Oleksiak were the scratches last night, which means Jordie Benn or Patrik Nemeth would be the likely candidates for tonight's scratch (though neither Johnny Oduya nor Jason Demers have had particularly strong runs of play recently and could be candidates as well)

With an optional morning skate after travel from Dallas last night, that's about the extent of the advance knowledge about tonight's lineup, save the fact that it appears Kari Lehtonen will start in goal.

On the Preds side of things, Nashville comes in riding points in nine consecutive games and may get Shea Weber back from injury. He skated this morning but his status is still unclear after missing the last stretch with a lower-body injury of his own.

As far as Russell goes, he met with Mike Heika after morning skate to talk about the adjustment process and some of his fancier stats: