Saturday, December 10, 2011
Bachman to start tonight; Lehtonen still a couple weeks away
By Mark Stepneski
Richard Bachman will get the nod in net tonight when the Dallas Stars play at Los Angeles tonight.
“We wanted to get him in on a game here on this trip. We thought with a days rest we’ll give him in an honest look,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “We told him last night he was going to go. He’s played a year for me and I have confidence in him. It will be a good start for him.
It will be the first NHL start for Bachman, who has two appearances with Dallas under his belt. He played the third the period of Thursday’s 5-2 loss in San Jose, stopping all 11 shots he’s faced. He played just under a half period last season in a game at Phoenix and made four saves on four shots.
Bachman, a fourth round pick (120th overall in 2006), will start in place of Andrew Raycroft, who is 2-2-0 with a 3.56 goals against average and .894 save percentage since taking over for the injured Kari Lehtonen. Raycroft has allowed 10 goals on 52 shots over the last two games and was pulled after the second period of Thursday’s loss after stopping 20 of 25 shots.
Injury update: Lehtonen likely to return after Christmas
Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen, who has missed the last four games with a groin injury, most likely will return will after Christmas.
“Lehts skated for the first time today,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “We don’t think we’ll have Lehts before Christmas, but after Christmas he should be a game player for us.”
Lehtonen was injured was injured in the November 26 game at Phoenix. This latest timetable for his return means that he'll miss at least seven more games, including tonight's in Los Angeles.
Adam Burish, who will miss his 11th game tonight with a broken hand is getting closer.
"Bur is skating and shooting pucks," Gulutzan said. "He won't be joining us on this trip, but he'll be very close when we get back. So, we'll probably be able to see Bur before Christmas."