Thursday, November 2, 2017

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Bakersfield Condors

Texas Stars
5-3-0-1, 11 pts, 0.611
#4 Pacific Division
atBakersfield Condors
3-4-0-0, 6 pts, 0.429
#7 Pacific Division
November 2nd at 8:30 PM
Rabobank Arena, Bakersfield, CA

Well, the Texas Stars do not look the same as they did on Saturday. First, there is hope that Justin Dowling could return to the lineup after missing just one game due to injury. Even without that, the lineup will be shifted. Jason Dickinson was recalled to Dallas yesterday and another forward will jump into the lineup to backfill. It will be Samuel Laberge or Austin Fyten as they are not veterans. Texas can't fill Dickinson's spot with Brian Flynn or Justin Dowling, since they would each put Texas over the veteran limit.

(Credit: Texas Stars)

The other change is the addition of Julius Honka. The Finnish defenseman is a huge difference maker at the AHL level and has the ability to dominate a game at times. If Denis Gurianov wants a model for what he needs to look like in order to be recalled for good to the NHL, Julius Honka is that model. Be noticeable on every play. Make the correct call. Dominate a shift. Dominate a game. Be a difference maker.

In the other locker room, Bakersfield is a team with middling results so far in the season. Rookie Ethan Bear is tied with Joey LaLeggia for the team scoring lead at 2-3=5 in 7 GP. Other notables include Ty Rattie (2-1=3) and Jesse Puljujarvi (0-3=3).

Texas ranks 23rd in PK in the league, but Bakersfield is 26th. On the other side, neither is a solid power play squad. The Condors rate 27th (8.7%) while Texas is mired at 29th (8.1%). Bakersfield has actually scored only two power play goals this season, they've just had only 23 opportunities, so the numbers look a smidge better. In terms of combined PP+PK, which teams aim to keep at 110 or better, these two clubs are 28th and 29th in the league. Only Lehigh Valley has a worse combined score.

Nick Ellis in net for the Condors is doing well enough. He's only played in 4 of their 7 games but has an even record and a .919 SV%. Eddie Pasquale, a name that echoes in the history of the Central Division, is the other goalie for Bako. His numbers have been less than great at 1-2-0, 3.31 and .875.

Stars injury/call up report:
Elie, Dickinson (call up)
Dowling (doubtful, upper body)
French (lower body)

Condors Web Resources:
Website: bakersfieldcondors.com
Blog (Official): Inside the Condors
Twitter: @Condors
Twitter: @CondorsHolty (PBP)

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