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Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Stars-Senators Preview

By Mark Stepneski

Ottawa Senators at Dallas Stars
Thursday December 1
7:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: KTCK-1310 (AM)

About the Stars

The Stars (14-9-1) defeated Colorado 3-1 in Denver Monday behind a 35-save effort by Andrew Raycroft, who will be the guy in goal for Dallas while Kari Lehtonen is out with a groin injury. It was Raycroft’s first win since January of last season.

“It’s nice to get a win, and just as important, nice to get all the guys believing in me and know that I can get wins for them,” said Raycroft. “It’s always a lot more fun to win.”

Michael Ryder scored two goals and Eric Nystrom also scored for the Stars, who are 3-1-1 over their last five games.

Injuries: LW Brenden Morrow, G Kari Lehtonen (groin), D Trevor Daley (back), D Alex Goligoski (broken thumb) and RW Adam Burish (broken hand) are out.

About the Senators

The Senators (12-10-2) improved to 5-1-1 over their last seven games with a 6-4 win at Winnipeg Tuesday. The Senators scored three straight goals to wipe out a 4-3 Jets lead in the third period.

"I was a little bit happy and unhappy with my team ... but at the end of the night we found a way to win,” Ottawa coach Paul MacLean said. “We showed some resilience and we continued to play to the end of the game, and worked really hard.”

Since starting the season 1-5-0, the Senators are 11-5-2 over their last 18 games.

Injuries: F Nikita Filatov (broken nose) is questionable. D Filip Kuba (upper body) is doubtful. C Peter Regin (shoulder), F Chris Neil (ankle) and D Matt Carkner (knee) are out.

Series notes

*This is the first and only meeting between the two teams this season.

*The Stars won last season’s only meeting, defeating the Senators 2-1 in Ottawa.

*The Stars are 15-8-2 all-time against Ottawa.

Statistical tidbits

*Since joining the Stars, Andrew Raycroft has posted an 8-2-0 record, 1.87 goals against average and .940 save percentage in starts that have not occurred on the second night of a back-to-back game.

*The Stars are 3-2-1 against the Eastern Conference this season.

*The Senators are 4-2-1 against the Western Conference.

*The Stars are 0-20 on the power play over the last eight games.

*The Senators have allowed a power play goal in five straight games and are 19-24 (79.2%) on the penalty kill during that stretch.

*The Stars are 16-17 (94.1%) on the penalty kill over the last five games.

*The Senators are 2-24 (8.3%) on the power play over the last six games.

*Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson leads all NHL defensemen in points (22) and leads the league in assists (21).

*LW Eric Nystrom has scored three of the Stars’ last six goals.