Dallas Stars Aim to Defeat Edmonton Oilers with Return of Patrick Sharp

The Dallas Stars take on the Edmonton Oilers tonight from the American Airlines Center. Catch yourself up with the info below.

The Dallas Stars will look to keep their momentum going as they host the Edmonton Oilers tonight. Puck drop is set for 6PM CT.

Records and Scores

Dallas (7-6-5) beat the Colorado Avalanche Thursday night, 3-2. They got out to a three-goal lead and then proved they could defend well enough to maintain their lead. Forward Cody Eakin also made his season debut after having missed time due to a knee injury. Dallas has earned points in their last five games and will aim do the same tonight.

Edmonton (9-8-1) fell to the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night, 4-2. They are currently on a five game losing streak and are on the verge of losing all of the momentum they had at the beginning of the season. They will look to get that back tonight as they visit the Stars.

Storylines

The Return of Patrick Sharp

In the string of Dallas Stars forwards falling to injury was the loss of Patrick Sharp. No. 10 was hit in a 4-3 overtime loss to the Kings on October 20th, which caused his head to collide awkwardly with the boards. As a result he left the game and was soon labeled as having concussion-like symptoms. The 34-year-old missed 14 games, but will make his much awaited return to the line-up tonight.

Sharp is an injury that was hard to swallow for the Stars. The start of the season was rough for the Stars in general, but Sharp looked like a guy who was finding a rhythm. To have him miss time due to a rather unavoidable injury was difficult to say the least.

But now he’s back. That is huge for the Stars because it makes creating lines a lot easier. He’s a fast skater and can keep ups with the younger Dallas forwards, not to mention that he adds a valuable piece to the Stars’ power play.

After being out of action for nearly a month it will not be easy to readjust to the fast-paced nature of the NHL. While he most likely will not be the best player on the ice, it will be great to have No. 10 back once again.

Falling Oilers

Edmonton has lost their last five games. While that may seem like an advantage for the Stars, it could be an obstacle they need to overcome.

The Oilers are going to be hungry for points tonight because they, to some degree, have lost what it feels like to win. They will need to redeem themselves, especially after having their best start to the season in years, and that starts tonight. Expect for Edmonton to come out flying with a lot of chances against the Stars’ net minder. They should be more offensive minded, as the games they have lost were either by one or two goals.

Dallas will need to counteract that with strong defensive play and strategic offense. If they can manage to establish some momentum early with strong special teams play, the Stars should be in a good position. If not, they might risk an ugly loss at home.

Injuries

The Dallas Stars’ injury list in diminishing for what seems like the first time all season. Mattias Janmark (knee) and Ales Hemsky (groin) are expected to miss the rest of the regular season and will not play tonight. Jiri Hudler (illness) is also going to sit this one out for the Stars.

Edmonton will play without Kris Russell (undisclosed), Mark Fayne (undisclosed), Brandon Davidson (undisclosed) and Matt Hendricks (lower-body) in tonight’s match-up.

Line Combinations

Dallas Stars

Jamie Benn – Tyler Seguin – Patrick Sharp

Antoine Roussel – Radek Faksa – Lauri Korpikoski

Devin Shore – Cody Eakin – Jason Spezza

Patrick Eaves – Adam Cracknell – Brett Ritchie

Dan Hamhuis – John Klingberg

Johnny Oduya – Stephen Johns

Patrik Nemeth – Jordie Benn

Kari Lehtonen

Antti Niemi

Edmonton Oilers

Patrick Maroon – Connor McDavid – Jordan Eberle

Benoit Pouliot – Leno Draisaitl – Jesse Puljujarvi

Milan Lucic – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Anton Slepyshev

Zack Kassian – Mark Letestu – Tyler Pitlick

Oscar Klefbom – Adam Larsson

Andrej Sekera – Matt Benning

Darnell Nurse – Eric Gryba

Cam Talbot

Jonas Gustavsson

Prediction

The Dallas Stars will play well enough to defeat the Oilers, 2-1 in regulation.

This article originally appeared on