Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Gameday Preview: Stars v. Chicago Wolves

Texas Stars
6-6-0-0, 12 pts
#8 West Division
v.Chicago Wolves
6-6-1-0, 13 pts
#6 West Division
November 10th at 7:30 PM
Cedar Park Center, Cedar Park, TX

The number 1 and 2 finishers from last year's West Division are both currently on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. Of course, it's a little silly to mention the playoff picture 12 games into the season.

Those of you who watched the standings all year last year will recall that both Texas and Chicago went through stretches similar to their current one last year. Texas's stretch was in the mid season and Chicago's was at the beginning. The Wolves were outside the playoff picture in January and had a great second half of the season to skyrocket into first place. Texas had the same situation in reverse.

Since Chicago and Texas last squared off in Rosemont, Chicago has played four games and is currently in the middle of an 8 game road trip. The Wolves dropped 2 of 3 over the weekend against other West Division opponents.

Currently the Wolves are in a bit of a goaltending predicament. Both members of last year's tandem of Peter Mannino and Drew MacIntyre are still in Chicago. However, injury to Atlanta tender Ondrej Pavelec forced the call-up of Edward Pasquale, a rookie. His play so far (5-3-0, 2.41 GAA, .916 SV%) has surpassed the play of both other netminders and has been stealing starts from Drew MacIntyre. Over the last four games, Mannino has started three and Pasquale once. MacIntyre backed up Mannino in two of his starts but was a healthy scratch in the other two games.

In the special teams department, Chicago is near the top of the list in power play (#3 at 22.8%) and near the bottom in penalty kill (#29 at 74.6%). Hopefully Texas has taken advantage of the time off this week to work on the power play and can make it click tonight.

Stars injury/call up report:
Sawada, Blindenbacher (injured)

Sawada likely to return tonight.

Website: chicagowolves.com
Blog (official): UnMic'd with Jason Shaver
Message Board: Wolves Forum
Twitter: @Chicago_Wolves

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