15-12-9-0, 39 pts
#9 Western Conference
15-22-1-0, 31 pts
#14 Western Conference
Looking back at last year's contests against the Americans, there is something to be said for the scheduling consistency. Last year, the two battled at the Cedar Park Center on January 15th. This year they will duel on the 14th.
In last year's battle, the Stars beat the Amerks 4-1 and extended their franchise-record winning streak to ten games. This year, both teams come in with 15 wins. Texas has had more luck making it to overtime to pick up those 'loser' points, as they say.
The Amerks have been much the same as the Stars. They put together one three-game win streak but have had a six game losing streak as well. Similar to the Stars again, injuries and callups have hurt the team. Leading scorer Phil Varone is in Buffalo along with Luke Adam, Zac Dalpe and Matt Ellis. Joel Armia has been skating in practice, according to Kevin Oklobzija, but he probably won't be playing as he's been off skates for two weeks and is a step behind the play. Further, Drew Bagnall, the captain, hasn't played in ten days because of a chronic shoulder issue.
More from Oklobzija:
@100degreehockey Top guns are with Sabres, Joel Armia still hurt, PP in an 0-for-33 drought, AHL's worst road record, in 0-9-1 road streak.— Kevin Oklobzija (@kevinoDandC) January 14, 2015
@100degreehockey On positive side, Andrey Makarov has been good and Matt Hackett was pretty much his old self in season debut Saturday.— Kevin Oklobzija (@kevinoDandC) January 14, 2015
On the Texas side of things, Justin Dowling appears to be back in the lineup, which is good news for the Texas offense. It helps to buffet the blow from learning that Radek Faksa underwent surgery last week on his shoulder and will be out for a while.
These are two points that Texas should be able to get, but that's what we thought about Toronto and Iowa as well. It figures to be a battle.
Stars injury/call up report:
Ritchie (call up)
Troock, Faksa (injury)
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Blog (beat): Democrat and Chronicle
Blog (amateur): Let's Go Amerks
Twitter (beat): @kevinoDandC
Twitter (amateur): @LetsGoAmerks