We are not even two full months into the season and the Dallas Stars are already making their third visit to the Pepsi Center. Tonight, the Colorado Avalanche will look to get back into the win column as they take on a Stars team that is coming into town after a 3-2 shootout win over the Chicago Blackhawks last night.
The Avalanche are 2-1 so far this season with the home team winning each of the three games. The latest matchup was just two weeks ago when the Avs came away with a 3-0 win behind a strong effort from Jonathan Bernier. In fact, that game was the Stars last loss - they are 4-0 since their last visit to Denver.
The Avs are back in the basement of the division, but they have at least two games in hand on everyone else. A win tonight will pull them within a point of both the Wild and the Blackhawks.
After a tough loss Friday night, the Avs are going to be looking for a big win tonight in order to keep pace in a ridiculously tough division. They will be without their captain again as he serves the third of a four-game suspension.
The coaching staff is looking to reward J.T. Compher after he had the best game of his young NHL career on Friday night. He will be lining up on the top line with MacKinnon and Rantanen.
Patrik Nemeth is skating with the team, but he won’t be in the lineup against his former team and it seems like we may still be another week away from the big Swede seeing game action.
Speaking of Swedish defenders, Anton Lindholm was horrible Friday night. He is still working his way back from a broken jaw, but if he’s going to be in the lineup, he has to be a lot better.
J.T. Compher - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen
Tyson Jost - Alexander Kerfoot - Sven Andrighetto
Matt Nieto - Carl Soderberg - Blake Comeau
Nail Yakupov - Dominic Toninato - Gabriel Bourque
Samuel Girard - Erik Johnson
Nikita Zadorov - Mark Barberio
Anton Lindholm - Tyson Barrie
The Stars are on a roll having won four straight games, unfortunately, they are going to be a tired group coming to altitude on the second leg of a back to back.
This is a team that leans heavily on their top line - something that will make tonight even harder on them. Tyler Seguin and Alex Radulov both played more than 25 minutes last night so it’s safe to assume that we might see some fatigue as tonight’s game goes on.
After getting into town late last night, the Stars likely won’t have a game-day skate, we don’t expect to see any lineup changes from last night aside from the team giving Ben Bishop the night off.
Jamie Benn - Tyler Seguin - Alexander Radulov
Mattias Janmark - Jason Spezza - Devin Shore
Remi Elie - Radek Faksa - Tyler Pitlick
Curtis McKenzie - Gemel Smith - Brett Ritchie
Esa Lindell - John Klingberg
Dan Hamhuis - Greg Pateryn
Stephen Johns - Julius Honka
Jonathan Bernier will be in net for the Avs. He is going to be getting a few starts over the next little while as the Avs schedule is jam-packed. He will look to improve on his .901 sv% and build on the 3-0 victory he had over the Stars the last time the teams met.
In the opposing net, the Avs will catch a break as they will face Stars backup Kari Lehtonen. He is 2-3-1 on the season with a .897 sv%.
Where and When?
Altitude Sports and Fox Sports South West will televise the game at 6pm MST.
If you’re listening to the radio waves, the game will air with our friend Marc Moser on 950AM Altitude Sports Network.