Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Ontario Reign

Texas Stars
16-13-1-2, 35 pts, 0.547
#5 Pacific Division
atOntario Reign
17-6-6-0, 40 pts, 0.690
#1 Pacific Division
January 11th at 9:00 PM
Citizens Business Bank Arena, Ontario, CA

Sure as the sun rises in the east, the Ontario Reign are on top of the Pacific Division. It was rocky to start as the Reign were 3-3-3 out of the gate. Since then, they are 14-3-3 and just broke up a six-game winning streak with a loss to Bakersfield. That game was played outdoors in the rain. Regardless of the questionable player safety conditions, it was a curious sight to behold.

Part of the driving force behind the Reign's success: Jack Campbell. The former Star grabbed the net on December 2nd and has gotten every start since then, a streak of 14 games. He's 14-3-3 himself and sports a .908 SV%. It's the best save percentage he's had since the Stars won the Cup in 2014 (.942). Of course, remember that those numbers were achieved in limited work of just 16 games due to injury. Campbell has already outlasted his workload from 13-14. Aside from that season, Campbell is arguably having his best season of consistent work in his career. He is on pace to play the most games of his career but could have to start sharing the net relatively soon as the Kings get their goalies back to health.

Speaking of health, Texas is finally back to it. With Andrew Bodnarchuk out last game but expected to play tonight, the Stars will not have any players on the injured list for the first time in several months. It is even possible that the Stars could get another player from the NHL before the game to accommodate Jamie Benn's return to health in Dallas. With that, Texas is looking up. While the shootout loss on Saturday was a tough blow, Texas still collected three of four points from a team that was 10-2-1 coming into the building. Goalie Maxime Lagace looks to have regained some swagger and Texas held the Cleveland offense to just 54 shots in 125 minutes of work, which is below their stated goal of less than 30 shots against per game.

Stars injury/call up report:
Bodnarchuk (lower body, probable)

Website: ontarioreign.com
Twitter: @ontarioreign
Coverage: Reign coverage via Jewels from the Crown

2 comments:

  1. The return of Benn off of IR does make the roster move pretty interesting. Dallas has 4 waiver exempt players: Faksa, Shore, Johns and Lindell. Do you expect one of them to be sent down because of their status or are all of them playing so well that Nill takes a chance on waiving guy who has less TOI/production like McKenzie, Cracknell or a Ritchie? Losing someone off of waivers has its drawbacks because you lose the player for nothing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ok now with Oleksiak presumably going on IR after last night's game the roster move is delayed (2-4 week speculation) but hypothetically what's guess on who gets moved?

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