Monday, November 18, 2013

Gameday Preview: Stars at Hamilton Bulldogs

Texas Stars
9-5-2-1, 21 pts
#4 Western Conference
atHamilton Bulldogs
6-7-0-3, 15 pts
#12 Western Conference
November 19th at 6:30 PM
Copps Coliseum, Hamilton, ON

UPDATE: According to Derek Willis, Sven Andrighetto and Magnus Nygren will be out for Hamilton. They are the top forward and defensive scorers for the Bulldogs.

After several seasons of one-and-one games against the Hamilton Bulldogs, Texas is treated with two visits to Steeltown, while the Bulldogs will come to the CPC twice themselves. Tonight's game is on a bit of an island when it comes to the season series. After tonight, the remaining three games in the series will occur in February and March.

Curtis McKenzie fights against the Bulldogs.
(Credit: Josh Rasmussen/Texas Stars)
Hamilton missed the playoffs last season, finishing in last place in the West. Despite that, Texas had an 0-2 record against the Bulldogs last year on two weirdly memorable games. In Hamilton, Alex Chiasson put one into his own empty net on a delayed penalty. Hamilton got one of their own to win a 2-1 contest. In Cedar Park, Texas led with six minutes remaining and then gave up two goals, including one with 24 seconds remaining to lose 2-1 again.

The Bulldogs come into tonight's game having broken up a six game losing streak over the weekend with a 3-2 shootout win against the Lake Erie Monsters. The Bulldogs have gone to OT or SO in seven of their sixteen games. They have not won in regulation since October 26th against Utica.

Dustin Tokarski has been reliable for the club, earning five of their six wins. He has a 2.28 GAA and a .920 SV%. His backup, Robert Mayer, has been a source of disappointment so far though. Mayer has a 1-4-2 record, including a recent loss in which he saved just nine of fourteen shots against. He is in his fourth full year with Hamilton and has never broken a .910 SV% in that time. His season GAA is more than a full goal higher than Tokarski.

A newcomer, rookie right winger Sven Andrighetto, leads the Bulldogs on offense. He has 7-4-11 and a plus-4 rating in fifteen games. Andrighetto was a 1.50 points per game player in the QMJHL and was a 2013 third round draft pick for the Canadiens. He was eligible for the draft in 2011 but was passed over twice before the 2013 draft. He is a Swiss native.

Other notable Bulldogs include top center and former IceHog Martin St. Pierre (3-7-10, minus-3 in 13 GP), sophomore defenseman Greg Pateryn (3-5-8, plus-5 in 9 GP) and former Texas Stars defenseman Drew Schiestel (0-4-4, even in 14 GP). Jarred Tinordi is also among the defensemen on the club. His father, Mark Tinordi, played with the Minnesota North Stars and was part of the inaugural team in Dallas. He was traded to Washington for Kevin Hatcher in 1995. Jarred has eleven games played with just a single assist to his name this season.

Texas will look to build on its success over the weekend, earning three of a possible four points in New York and Toronto. Part of that success was the continuing work of the power play. Now at a 27.6% clip on the season, the Stars have gotten at least one power play goal in their last eight straight games. Hamilton is midpack on power play and penalty kill. They allow the 7th most shorthanded opportunities per game in the league (5.31 power plays granted per game).

Stars injury/call up report:
Campbell, Nemeth (injury)

Website: hamiltonbulldogs.com
Twitter: @dogsplaybyplay

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