Saturday, March 10, 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Tucson Roadrunners

           Texas Stars                         Tucson Roadrunners
     31-21-6-3, 71 pts, .582      at      31-17-4-1, 67 pts, .632
   #4 Pacific Division                       #1 Pacific Division

March 10th at 8:05 PM
Tucson Arena, Tucson, AZ

If the playoffs started tonight, this would be your round one matchup. And if those playoffs started tonight, this would be pretty close to the team Texas would be fielding.

(Credit: Tucson Roadrunners)
With Martin Hanzal's season ending back surgery, it went from very unlikely to basically impossible that Texas would get Jason Dickinson back in the fold this season. While both he and Remi Elie are playoff eligible in Texas, the Dallas Stars hope to be competing in playoffs of their own when the AHL playoffs kickoff. Mike McKenna would likely be back in Cedar Park at that point, but this is the team.

This was not true earlier this week, however, because of one glaring gap in the lineup, Curtis McKenzie. The captain played his first game since January 27th when a bizarre collision with one of his own defensemen took him out of the lineup. Last night he had two shots and a minor penalty but before his departure, he was set to be Texas's representative in the AHL All-Star game. His absence from the lineup has dropped him out of the top points scorer list in the AHL, but he is still a point per game player at this level and extremely important to have back.

Tonight's contest is the last in the season series between these two teams, none of which have gone Texas's way. With this shaping up to be a potential playoff matchup, tonight's game is important to show that the Stars can beat this team and give them that confidence when the matchup begins in April.

Stars injury/call up report:
Dickinson, McKenna (call-up)

Roadrunners Web Resources
Twitter: @RoadrunnersAHL
Coverage: @CallahanOnAir (Tucson PBP)

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