NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, March 16th (All times Eastern)
Chicago Blackhawks (22-2-3) at Dallas Stars (12-11-3), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Dallas Stars didn't seem to have luck on their side last time out. They'll need things to break their way on Saturday evening when they attempt to avoid a fourth straight defeat in a matchup with the mighty Chicago Blackhawks.
The Stars are 0-2-1 in their last three games and have scored just twice in that span. They have also scored only once on 14 power-play chances in that time, going 0-for-5 in Thursday's 2-1 shootout loss to the Anaheim Ducks.
Ray Whitney scored his third goal of the season to put Dallas ahead in the first period before Anaheim answered in the second frame. Minutes after that goal by the Ducks, Whitney put a shot on net that Anaheim goaltender Jonas Hiller failed to control with his glove from his knees, but he got a saving whistle from the referee right before Derek Roy put the loose puck into the net.
"It was a quick whistle," Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan said. "(It) should've been a goal, but those things happen in a game and you've got a lot of time to put another one in."
Jaromir Jagr also had a shot ring off the crossbar and right post before bouncing out and a review of the play upheld the no-goal call.
Kari Lehtonen made 29 saves for the Stars, who are now three points out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Though captain Brenden Morrow returned from a two-game absence on Thursday caused by a strained groin, sniper Jaime Benn sat out his second game in a row because of a wrist injury. He is questionable for this game and has tallied six goals with 16 points in 19 games this season.
"We'll see how he is at (Saturday's) skate," Gulutzan told Dallas' official website of Benn. "He didn't shoot any pucks today, so we'll see how he is at the morning skate and we'll make a decision after that."
That could leave the Stars without one of their top-scoring options as they take on the Blackhawks, who lead the NHL with 47 points and snapped a two-game slide with Thursday's 2-1 shootout decision over the Columbus Blue Jackets.
It was Chicago's first win since having its NHL-record 24-game point streak (21-0-3) to open the season end and came thanks to shootout goals from Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. Corey Crawford came up with 29 saves before turning aside 2-of-3 Columbus skaters in the breakaway session.
Kane also assisted on Johnny Oduya's goal in regulation, logging the 400th point of his NHL career.
"It's a way better feeling in here when we win," said Kane. "It was a good fight for us, a tight-checking game. For us to come out and get two points, it's a good confidence boost. It's good to feel a win again."
The Blackhawks won the opener of a four-game swing and they have taken three of their past four versus the Stars. That includes a 3-2 overtime victory in Dallas on Jan. 24 in the first of three scheduled meetings this season.
Marian Hossa had the winner 1:41 into the extra frame after Morrow was called for interference.
03/16 10:37:43 ET