Radek Faksa and his wingers, Antoine Roussel and Tyler Pitlick, will have a stout assignment when the Dallas Stars take on the Edmonton Oilers. They’ll be tasked with shutting down the third-highest road scorer in the NHL this season.
Connor McDavid has scored five goals and 24 points on the road this season, helping lead the team to a winning record away from the icy north (9-8-2). Not to mention, McDavid has terrorized the Stars since he came into the league. In six games played against Dallas, he has scored seven goals and racked up 10 points.
Luckily for the Stars, Faksa and company have shown that they can take on the heavy load of matching up against top lines in the league. “They’ve had a big task the last little while and they’ve held their own,” head coach Ken Hitchcock said after the Stars beat the New Jersey Devils at home on Tuesday night. It’s allowed Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin to get more favorable matchups, sparking more scoring from the big guns in Big D. “We’ve got more energy from them lately because Faksa’s been taking the big load on the checking five-on-five.”
Dallas Stars Lines
Jason Dickinson was reassigned to the Texas Stars yesterday, as Remi Elie returns from sickness today. Julius Honka is expected to be a healthy scratch for the second game in a row after Marc Methot returned to the lineup. Lines should resemble the following:
Jamie Benn-Tyler Seguin-Brett Ritchie
Mattias Janmark-Jason Spezza-Alexander Radulov
Antoine Roussel-Radek Faksa-Tyler Pitlick
Remi Elie-Martin Hanzal-Devin Shore
Esa Lindell-John Klingberg
Dan Hamhuis-Greg Pateryn
Marc Methot-Stephen Johns
Ben Bishop will make the start in net for the ninth game in a row. After the game tonight, Dallas will have their five day CBA-mandated break and will return to game play next Saturday night when they host the Colorado Avalanche.
The only really impacting the Oilers lineup is that Patrick Maroon is currently suspended after a head hit on Drew Doughty. He’ll serve the second game of his two game suspension tonight. Oilers lines should be something as follows:
Milan Lucic - Connor McDavid - Jesse Puljujarvi
Michael Cammalleri - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Ryan Strome
Drake Caggiula - Leon Draisaital - Anton Slepyshev
Jujhar Khaira - Mark Letestu - Zack Kassian
Darnell Nurse - Adam Larsson
Oscar Klefbom - Kris Russell
Andrej Sekera - Matt Benning
Cam Talbot is likely to get the start in net.