Saturday, October 30, 2010

Gameday Preview: Stars v. Houston Aeros

Texas Stars
6-2-0-0, 12 pts
#4 West Division
v.Houston Aeros
2-5-1-0, 5 pts
#8 West Division
October 30th at 7:00 PM
Cedar Park Center, Cedar Park, TX

The Texas Stars, fresh off a two game roadie, return home to face the Houston Aeros at Cedar Park Center tonight. At this point, Houston and Texas could not look more different on the record sheet. Texas is riding a three game winning streak with Ws over Peoria, Rockford, and Chicago. Houston, meanwhile, won their first two games against Oklahoma City and have gone on a six game losing streak.

Houston fans are frustrated with a lack of offensive output by the Aeros. Leading scorers for the Aeros are JM Daoust (2-3-5) and Cody Almond (1-4-5). Houston has averaged only 2 goals per game in their first eight games and has not had the defense to make that stand up. Former Star Warren Peters has yet to tally a point with Houston and is minus-5 on the season with 4 PIMs.

Houston has yet to allow a power play goal on the road this season. Goalies for the Aeros are a little bit the same and a little bit different. A season ending injury to Minnesota backup Josh Harding made it look like Anton Khudobin would get the call, but the Wild signed Jose Theodore, giving Khudobin another year in the AHL.

Khudobin is 0-3 with a 2.31 GAA and .929 SV%. Josh Tordjman, the free agent signee from San Antonio, has been relegated to the ECHL. Matt Hackett backs up Khudobin and has a 3.36 GAA, .894 SV%, and 2-3 record. Hackett started last night in San Antonio and allowed five goals.

Hopefully Texas can take advantage of an opponent who is struggling to tune up some of their special teams. As I have been mentioning, Coach Gulutzan really wants the Stars to execute better on the power play. Texas is dead middle on PP at 16.2%. Additionally, their penalty kill ranks toward the bottom of the league at just 75%. This is definitely a point for improvement for these Texas Stars.

The Stars will be sporting their pink jerseys to support breast cancer awareness this evening as well.

Stars injury/call up report:
Sawada, McCulloch (injury)

Website: aeros.com
Blog (unofficial): The Third Intermission
Twitter: @Houston_Aeros

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