Thursday, February 2, 2012

Gameday Preview: Stars at Houston Aeros

Texas Stars
20-20-1-2, 43 pts
#13 Western Conference
atHouston Aeros
21-11-3-9, 53 pts
#4 Western Conference
February 2nd at 7:05 PM
Toyota Center, Houston, TX

All five teams in the West division are in action this first day back from the All-Star break. Texas travels to Houston, the last team they posted a W against on January 21st. That sparkling 4-3 SO victory capped a three game win streak and signaled what could have been the start of a real turnaround. The Ws buoyed the Stars to 10th in the conference and within striking distance of the top eight before the All-Star break. Of course, it is well known now that Texas dropped both before the break, sinking them to #13.

Interestingly enough, Houston had a similar stumble into the break. They lost their last six coming into the break and are 3-4-1-2 in their last ten. There is quite a bit of value for Houston in their early stellar play though, as this skid hasn't dropped them out of home ice advantage yet.

Another interesting note here is that Houston only has one more win than Texas, yet they are eleven point ahead of the Stars. In short, it's the OT/SO points. Houston has found ways to come back in games or stay in tight ones. For whatever reason as well, they've been more likely to lose at home than on the road this year, giving Texas something to work off of tonight. Houston is 7-6-3-6 at home and 14-5-0-3 on the road. (For the record, Texas is 10-7-1-1 at home and 10-13-0-1 on the road.)

As to the game tonight, the Stars are a bit banged up. Sawada and Tousignant remain out with injuries and Brad Lukowich could be out this weekend as well. Both Sceviour and Labrie left Saturday's game in OKC and could be questionable for tonight.

Stars injury/call up report:
Larsen (callup)
Lukowich, Sawada, Tousignant (injury)
Sceviour, Labrie (questionable)

Website: aeros.com
Blog (official): Pilot to Gunner
Blog (unofficial): The Third Intermission
Twitter: @Houston_Aeros
Twitter: @aero_joe (play-by-play)

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