Remember when the Carolina Hurricanes and Dallas Stars were divisional rivals? (Yeah, we know, we’ve tried to erase the 2020-21 season from our memory as well.)
The morning skate today featured one expected new participant as well as an unexpected returning skater. Max Domi will make his Hurricanes debut tonight, slotted in on the fourth line alongside former Canadiens teammate Jesperi Kotkaniemi. Domi’s entry into the lineup will relegate Steven Lorentz to the press box.
The surprise was the return of Jordan Martinook to practice. Martinook has been out for about a week with a lower-body injury, and while he won’t play tonight, the fact that he’s skating again ahead of schedule was a welcome surprise.
Frederik Andersen will be back in net again after holding off the Lightning on Tuesday night, and the rest of the team will also look very familiar to how it was arranged two nights ago. A friendly reminder: tonight’s game is an ESPN exclusive so Mike and Tripp will be radio-only. However, the game is not solely on ESPN+; if you’re one of the old farts who still has a cable or satellite subscription, you’ll be able to watch.
Here’s how the Canes will look when you tune in:
Teuvo Teravainen - Sebastian Aho - Seth Jarvis
Andrei Svechnikov - Vincent Trocheck - Martin Necas
Nino Niederreiter - Jordan Staal - Jesper Fast
Max Domi - Jesperi Kotkaniemi - Derek Stepan
Jaccob Slavin - Tony DeAngelo
Brady Skjei - Brett Pesce
Ian Cole - Ethan Bear
Injuries and Scratches: Jordan Martinook (lower body), Brendan Smith (healthy), Steven Lorentz (healthy)
It seems like every year the Dallas Stars find themselves exactly where they are this year. Even despite the fact that they went to the Stanley Cup Final two seasons ago, the Stars are almost always found somewhere in the neighborhood of the wild card spots, and this year is no different: they’re a point up on free-falling Vegas for the final wild card spot, and have at least a game in hand on everyone below them in the standings.
Since they’re always in limbo at the trade deadline, it should come as no surprise that they tend to hedge their bets, and nibbling around the edges is exactly what they did this year. Goalie Scott Wedgewood and winger Vladislav Namestnikov will make their Stars debut tonight after being picked up from Arizona and Detroit, respectively, on Monday.
If you haven’t been paying attention, Jason Robertson has been on an absolute tear since the Stars’ win over the Hurricanes at the end of November. Robertson had two points that night, and since then he has 43 points in 40 games, knocking on the door of the top-10 in goal scoring with 31 this season.
Here’s how the Stars will line up:
Jason Robertson - Roope Hintz - Joe Pavelski
Vladislav Namestnikov - Tyler Seguin - Denis Gurianov
Marian Studenic - Jamie Benn - Alexander Radulov
Michael Raffl - Radek Faksa - Luke Glendening
Ryan Suter - Jani Hakanpaa
Esa Lindell - John Klingberg
Joel Hanley - Andrej Sekera
Injuries and Scratches: Jacob Peterson (healthy), Thomas Harley (healthy), Joel Kiviranta (healthy), Braden Holtby (IR lower body), Miro Heiskanen (IR illness)
Referees: Eric Furlatt #27, Dan O’Rourke #9
Linesmen: Scott Cherrey #50, Michel Cormier #76