Keith Ballard carries the puck up the right wing and flings a backhand on net.
Jeff Woywitka doesn't clear the rebound or take the man. In fact, he just gets in Alex Auld's way, and Steven Reinprecht comes in to spank in the loose puck for a 1-0 Florida lead at the 10:48 mark of the first.
He looked fine at the morning skate to me, but the Stars have announced that Marty Turco is out with flu-like symptoms.
He wasn't going to play tonight, anyway, but this affects Saturday.
They aren't saying if he will be going to Nashville, but they are getting on a plane after this game, and my guess is that's not the best place for a person with flu. So, logic tells me there will be no Turco tomorrow, either.
Matt Climie has been recalled from Texas (AHL).
Here's the press release:
Frisco, Tex. - The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has recalled goaltender Matt Climie on emergency conditions from the Texas Stars - Dallas' primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). Dallas goaltender Marty Turco has flu-like symptoms and is not available for tonight's game against Florida -- a step being taken as a precautionary measure to safeguard Turco's welfare and that of the team.
Climie, 26, has appeared in five games for Texas, going 2-1-2 with a goals-against-average (GAA) of 1.35 and a save percentage of .954. He stopped all 25 shots he faced on Oct. 15 vs. Grand Rapids, earning the first shutout in Texas Stars history and his first at the AHL level. Climie made his NHL debut at the end of last season, appearing in three games for Dallas with a record of 2-1-0 and a 2.92 GAA.
The 6-3, 205-pound native of Luduc, Alta., signed as a free agent with Dallas on March 20, 2008.
The Dallas Stars will take on the Florida Panthers tonight at American Airlines Center (7:30 pm, FOX Sports Southwest, Sports Radio 1310 The Ticket).
I like the thinking. He's playing one of his old teams. He gets his first start at home, and Marty Turco has been pretty good in Nashville (where he will play on Saturday).
Mike Modano and Jere Lehtinen skated hard with Steve Ott in the morning, and all three could come back against Nashville on Saturday, but I don't believe Modano nor Lehtinen will play tonight (Ott is serving the second game of a two-game suspension).
If Modano and/or Lehtinen can't go Saturday, both should be back by Wednesday at home against Calgary.
I think we will get our first look at a seven-man rotation on defense. Mark Fistric is in, and he could play some forward, but I think Marc Crawford will double shift a couple of different guys on the fourth line and let Charlie Huddy sort out all seven defensemen.
I'm not sure this means anything more than the Texas Stars might need Wathier this weekend.
While Jere Lehtinen (intercostal muscle) and Mike Modano (ribs) skated today and will skate tomorrow, I don't think either will be ready to play on Friday. Instead, my guess is Mark Fistric moves up to forward and Jeff Woywitka plays on defense.
Then, Steve Ott comes back in on Saturday, and all is well with the world.
Modano or Lehtinen might play on Saturday, but both could just as easily miss that game and come back next Wednesday against Calgary.
I guess we'll sort it all out at the morning skate.
By the way, practice on Monday is at 10 a.m. at the Dr Pepper StarCenter in McKinney. It is open to the public.
Mike Modano (ribs) and Jere Lehtinen (intercostal muscle) both went through a full practice Thursday and both looked good. Both will skate Friday at the morning skate. That said, coach Marc Crawford lists both as ``questionable'' for Friday's game against the Florida Panthers.
The Stars play on back-to-back nights with travel (they're in Nashville on Saturday), so getting Modano (he's played one game and been out since the first game of the season) and Lehtinen (he's played two games and missed the last seven) back in a situation where they may play twice in two nights might be too risky. We'll see how they handle it.
If you're guessing both might come back on Saturday against Nashville and then take three days off before a home game against Calgary, I'm thinking you could be right.
To complicate issues, Steve Ott will also be back on Saturday from his two-game suspension, and if both Lehtinen and Modano come off of IR, then two forwards could need to go to the minors. Francis Wathier would be the obvious pick, but GM Joe Nieuwendyk also pulled aside Tom Wandell in the locker room today, so you wonder if Wandell might have to go back, as well.
Crawford said he will split the goalies in these next two games, but would not say who will play in which game. I'm guessing he goes with Alex Auld against Florida (one of Auld's former teams) and Turco against Nashville. Auld has not played at home yet, and this seems like a good game for him.
Brenden Morrow (hip flexor), James Neal (groin) and Brad Richards (groin) missed practice to rest soreness. They should all be in the lineup Friday.
You can roll out all sorts of cliche's on this one, and I'll probably buy into all of them.
The Stars were not a good team tonight, and yet they somehow found a way to win 4-3 in overtime. So is this an example of good teams find a way to win even when they aren't playing their best? Is this an example of finally realizing they were the better team and stepping it up at the end? Is this an example of learning a valuable lesson without too much cost?
Probably all of the above.
The Stars have not been good at home, they vowed to put out a great effort, and they fell completely flat in the first period. It could have been that they didn't take the 1-7-2 Maple Leafs seriously enough. It could have been that they had dead legs from just completing seven games in 11 nights and then taking three days without a game. It could have been that they missed the energy of suspended winger Steve Ott.
Whatever it was, though, I fully expect that they won't have the same problem Friday against Florida.
``We talked in the room after that there are lessons to be learned from games like this,'' Crawford said. ``It shows me that even though they didn't have their best stuff, they had enough to find a push. I think that speaks volumes to the group.''
What also speaks volumes is the fact Crawford kept throwing out his most effective players in the third period when his team needed a comeback. The Wathier-Sutherby-Barch line took a seat (after trying to create energy early) and the Ribeiro and Richards lines were rolled out. Ribeiro came through with an amazing redirection goal to tie the game, and then Richards and James Neal finished things off with the OT winner.
Inbetween, Marty Turco came up with some big saves when he had to have them and Stephane Robidas played 26:15, had four shots on goal, four hits and four blocked shots. He added an assist on the game-winning goal..
So did we learn anything from their lessons? I think we learned that this team is far from perfect, like most teams in the NHL. I think we learned that this team is better than it was a couple of weeks ago, when it couldn't raise its game in OT situations.
And that is a positive sign.
There still is much work to do, and the players and coaches know it. They are in the process of doing that work. But to be in the process and be 6-2-4 is a very good thing.