The Dallas Stars just concluded their eight-game stretch against the Central Division. It was a good run for the Stars, who earned 11 of a possible 16 points after a 5-2-1 record.
Perhaps the most impressive part is that Dallas has put themselves in the thick of the wild-card race – and they’re only six points behind the Minnesota Wild for third place in the division.
It’s not like the Stars are done with the Central Division, but they do get a little break. That break starts today with a matinee against the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres once again are having a rough year. After starting the season with promise, Buffalo has leveled off and find themselves near the bottom of the Eastern Conference with 40 points.
Potential Lines for Dallas
Jason Robertson (21) - Roope Hintz (24) - Joe Pavelski (16)
Jamie Benn (14) - Tyler Seguin (91) - Denis Gurianov (34)
Michael Raffl (18) - Radek Faksa (12) - Alexander Radulov (47)
Riley Tufte (27) - Jacob Peterson (40) - Luke Glendening (11)
Ryan Suter (20) - Miro Heiskanen (4)
Esa Lindell (23) - John Klingberg (3)
Thomas Hartley (55) - Jani Hakanpaa (2)
Jake Oettinger (29)
Braden Holtby (70)
The Buffalo Sabres
As mentioned before, the Sabres find themselves near the bottom of the Eastern Conference – but that doesn’t mean the Stars should take them lightly. As a matter of fact, it was one week ago that Dallas laid an egg against the Arizona Coyotes, who are at the bottom of the Western Conference standings.
Buffalo is coming into today’s game on a five-game losing streak. In those five games, the Sabres have been outscored 24-10. That means Dallas has a chance to jump out on this team. It also means Buffalo is desperate for a win. The Sabres are playing game four of a five game road trip.
They have some guys that can score, too. Tage Thompson and Jeff Skinner lead the team with 20 goals each, while Rasmus Dahlin leads the team in assists with 25. Dallas needs to jump on this team early and not let them hang around.
It’s an early start, which means a slow start sometimes. You don’t have to look very far for that. Two weeks ago, Dallas played the Colorado Avalanche on Super Bowl Sunday and lost 4-0. That was also an early start.
Potential Buffalo Lines
Jeff Skinner (53) - Tage Thompson (72) - Alex Tuch (89)
Rasmus Asplund (74) - Dylan Cozens (24) - Kyle Okposo (21)
Peyton Krebs (19) - Casey Mittelstadt (37) - Victor Olofsson (71)
Anders Bjork (96) - Cody Eakin (20) - John Hayden (15)
Rasmus Dahlin (26) - Casey Fitzgerald (45)
Mattias Samuelsson (23) - Jacob Bryson (78)
Robert Hagg (8) - Mark Pysyk (13)
Dustin Tokarski (31)
Craig Anderson (41)