Dallas Stars: Mark Fistric

Fistric hopes to play against former team

April, 22, 2014
Apr 22
DALLAS -- The Anaheim Ducks were still processing through the fact that they won't have Stephane Robidas in these playoffs anymore after he fractured his right leg early in the second period of Monday's Game 3.

But it means they need a replacement. One strong possibility is a longtime teammate of Robidas' in former Star Mark Fistric.

“Heartbreaking," Fistric said when asked about Robidas' injury. "I’ve been a teammate of Robi’s for a lot of years and I look up to him as a mentor and he means the world to me. As a young guy coming into the organization in Dallas, he showed me a lot and he taught me a lot. The injury itself is tough to swallow as an athlete and as a friend and teammate, but for it to happen another time, it’s not a great thing to see obviously and my heart goes out to him and his family. I know they were there and it’s not an easy thing to go through.”

For coach Bruce Boudreau, Robidas' injury forces him to dig into the depth at defense. Fistric is a logical possibility now that he's gone through some rehab games and is fully ready to go.

“It’s been long, frustrating, but had a lot of good people surrounding me, helping me out and I feel really good now," Fistric said. "If I’m called upon, I’m ready.”

(Read full post)

FRISCO -- With nothing on the line in Saturday’s regular season finale against the St. Louis Blues, the Dallas Stars will take a look at some of their young players.

Center Scott Glennie, the team’s first round pick (8th overall) in 2009, will make his NHL debut. So will defenseman Brenden Dillon, a free agent signing out of the Western Hockey League last season. Glennie, Dillon and defenseman Jordie Benn were called up from the Texas Stars on Friday afternoon.

Both Glennie and Dillon played under Stars coach Glen Gulutzan at the end of last season in the AHL.

“I only had Glennie for a short period of time, but Scotty has made big strides in the American Hockey League,” Gulutzan said. “Whenever you get young guys like that who on two or three nights over a two or three week span that they are the best player on the ice, that’s an encouraging sign in that league. And when it’s happening more and more frequently, then it’s a real good thing and that’s what Scotty has done. Brenden has done that too. Anytime that happens at that level you know you have a player on the up.”

Glennie got off to a slow start this season after he suffered a concussion during Dallas’ training camp in Prince Edward Island. But he’s picked up the pace as the season has moved along and has 37 points (12 goals, 25 assists) in 68 games this season.

Dillon, who had impressive showing last season when he made the jump from junior to the AHL, has 26 points (5 goals, 21 assists) in 72 games.

“With Brenden you are going to see a big, good skating defenseman that can move the puck,” Gulutzan said. “With Glennie you are going to see skilled guy who can move and skate.”

Forward Reilly Smith, who was signed to an entry-level contract last month and made the jump to the NHL straight from college, will also be in the lineup for the Stars on Saturday. Smith has already played two games for the Stars, registering no points.

“Even though I played only four minutes (in the first game), I was soaking in every minute of it,” Smith said. “Just being in Edmonton with so much history around you, just being a small part of it was a great experience. Having my first NHL game there was absolutely phenomenal. We got the win and I was able to get my feet wet for the next game in Vancouver.”

Smith finished second in the nation in goal scoring, notching 30 in 39 games with Miami University this season.

“With Reilly you’re going to see a really skilled player coming out college that has the ability to score,” said Gulutzan. “It will be interesting to see those guys play with good players.”

The Stars will sit some veteran players who have been battling injuries, players Gulutzan said have been receiving injections to get through games and practices. Players who could sit out tomorrow include Steve Ott, Radek Dvorak, Steve Ott, Mike Ribeiro and Brenden Morrow. Mark Fistric, who is another player who has been battling injuries, hurt his groin in Thursday’s game and is out for Saturday.

“I talked to every injured player that played and they all want to play the last game, whether they have to take a needle or not to get through, to numb some of the issues there,” said Gulutzan. “They all want to play, but the reality is we don’t want to put them through that. We want to take a look at some of our young guys.”

Richard Bachman will get the start in goal for the Stars.

Hobey Baker winner announced

Dallas native and Dallas Stars prospect Austin Smith was one of three finalists for the Hobey Baker Award, which goes to the top player in college hockey. The winner of this year’s award, announced Friday evening, is Jack Connolly from the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

Connolly finished second in the nation in scoring with 60 points (20, 40 assists) in 41 games. Smith led the nation in goal scoring with 36 in 39 games and finished 3rd in points with 57.
FRISCO, Texas -- Stars fans will get a little glimpse of the future in Saturday night's regular-season finale against the St. Louis Blues at American Airlines Center. Right wing Scott Glennie, the team's first-round pick (eighth overall) in 2009, will make his NHL debut.

So will defenseman Brenden Dillon, a free-agent pick out of the WHL last year. Both those players have spent the season with the Texas Stars of the American Hockey League.

The 21-year-old Glennie has 12 goals and 25 assists in 68 games this season. Glennie got off to a slow start after suffering a concussion in training camp, but he's picked up 28 points (nine goals, 19 assists) over the past 43 games.

Dillon, who is also 21, is a big, mobile, two-way defenseman. He has 26 points (five goals, 21 assists) in 72 games this season.

Reilly Smith, the third-round pick (69th overall) from 2009, will be back in the lineup. Smith, who signed an entry-level contract with Dallas last month, has already appeared in two games with the Stars.

Richard Bachman will get the start in goal.

The Stars will sit some veterans who have been battling through injuries as the Stars battled to get into the playoffs.

"We've had guys taking injections here to get through a game. These same players can get through a practice without it. You won't see a couple of those guys tomorrow," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. "Most likely Steve Ott, depending on how he is tomorrow. Radek Dvorak, you guys all know. Guys that you probably didn't know would be [Stephane] Robidas and [Mike] Ribeiro that have been playing injured. Those guys and possibly Brenden [Morrow]. At the end the day, you don't want to give them the needle to play."

Mark Fistric, who injured his groin in Thursday night's game at Nashville, was also getting injections to play prior to last night's injury. He'll be out for Saturday's game.
With three games left in the season the Dallas Stars are now on the outside looking in at a playoff spot. The Stars fell to ninth place in the Western Conference Saturday, falling 3-0 to the Sharks in San Jose.

The Sharks, who entered the game one point behind the Stars, started strong, scoring in the first minute of the game and controlling play for most of the night.

“We needed to put more pucks on their net, create some more residual chances there. They had a lot of jump and did it to us,” Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. “They got that one early and it kind of set us back. The early jump was kind of the difference.”

Sharks center Joe Thornton set up a wide open Joe Pavelski, who beat Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen with a shot from the slot just 58 seconds into the game to give San Jose an early 1-0 lead.

The Stars put the Sharks on three power play s in the first period and San Jose cashed in on the third one. Martin Havlat set up Jason Demers, who scored from the left circle late in the period to give the Sharks a 2-0 lead.

It was not the first period the Stars needed.

“Our start, for one thing. I think they doubled up on us in shots early in the game. We wanted to be disciplined and stay out of the penalty box. We didn’t do that. They made us pay on the power play,” Stars captain Brenden Morrow said. “Playing with more desperation. Our backs are against the wall. It was kind of a must win for us and we didn’t get the start we needed.”

Pavelski added another goal in the second period. Antti Niemi stopped a total of 22 shots for the Sharks, who outshot the Stars 34-22 in the game.

“It was the biggest game of the year for us,” Thornton said. “We started well and I though we competed hard all the way through. It was a good job by us.”

The Stars have lost six of their last nine games and went 1-3-0 on their just concluded four-game road trip. They fell to 1-11-2 in the second games of back-to backs.

“I was a little bit worried about this game coming in. We’ve never been good in back-to-backs,” Gulutzan said. “The whole road trip, I was most disappointed with the Calgary game (5-4 loss). We’d be sitting in a different situation in a winnable hockey game.”

The Stars are one point behind the eighth place Sharks, who will be at American Airlines Center Tuesday to conclude the home-and-home series.

“We’ve got to move on. We’ve got a big game against this team Tuesday,” Gulutzan said. “Our fate is in our own hands, still, and at this juncture of the season that is what you have to focus on.”

The Stars have three games remaining and it’s a tough schedule. They host San Jose onTuesday, play at Nashville on Thursday and then wrap up the season with a game against St. Louis on Saturday at American Airlines Center.

“We are where we are and, like I said, we still control our own destiny,” Gulutzan said. “We don’t need someone to beat somebody else. We just need to win our last three games.”

And that quest starts Tuesday with the rematch against the Sharks.

“We’ve just got to bounce back,” Dallas defenseman Stephane Robidas said. “We’ve got to learn from what we did wrong tonight. We’re playing the same team, so it should be fresh in our memory. It won’t be a different system, we know how they play and what they’re trying to do. It’s a good team, but it’s a team we can beat.”


*Stars defenseman Mark Fistric returned to the lineup after missing the last five games with an abdominal strain.

*Stars forward Toby Petersen was in the lineup after being a healthy scratch the past 15 games. He played 4:46 in the game.

*Radek Dvorak (ankle), Eric Nystrom (leg) and Tom Wandell (illness) were out for Dallas.

*Reilly Smith, Adam Pardy and Jordie Benn were healthy scratches for Dallas.

Mark Fistric in for Stars in San Jose

March, 31, 2012
Stars defenseman Mark Fistric is back in the lineup for tonight’s crucial game against the Sharks in San Jose after missing the last five games with an abdominal strain. Adam Pardy will come out the lineup for the Stars.

Also, Toby Petersen will be back in the lineup for Dallas. He’s been a healthy scratch the last 15 games. Reilly Smith, who has played the last two games, will sit this one out.

Kari Lehtonen in goal for the Stars and Antti Niemi will get the start for San Jose.

Big points at stake vs. Canucks tonight

March, 30, 2012
There are just five games left in the regular season for the Dallas Stars and it kicks off tonight with the first game of a key back-to-back series. The Stars play at Vancouver tonight and then in San Jose tomorrow.

Right now the focus is on the Canucks. Picking up a win or a point will guarantee that the Stars stay on top of the Pacific Division and third in the West for another day.

“It’s kind of fun, it’s kind of nerve-racking, but the message in here – what we keep telling each other – is we control where we go,” Stars forward Adam Burish said. “We control whether we are going to make it or not, and that’s what you want this time of the year.”

The Stars have won two of three games the Canucks, who are the second seed in the West and are three points behind St. Louis in the race for first overall in the conference.

“It’s big. We want the points and we want to beat the Canucks,” said Burish. “The most important thing is finding ways to win games and not losing ground. You win a game you stay in third, you lose a game and you’re in eight, maybe ninth place every night. That’s just how it feels. It’s just controlling what we can, winning games.”

Mark Fistric (abdominal strain), Radek Dvorak (ankle) and Eric Nystrom (leg) are all out tonight. Only Fistric is skating.

Kari Lehtonen gets the start in goal for the Stars.

Roberto Luongo is expected to start in goal for the Canucks.

The Stars will go with basically the same lineup as last game, although it appears they’ll move Tomas Vincour up to the second line and put Burish on the third line. Here’s the Stars’ projected lineup.




Stars will run with Kari Lehtonen

March, 29, 2012
The Dallas Stars will continue to ride Kari Lehtonen as they head into a big back-to-back set of games at Vancouver (Friday) and at San Jose (Saturday).

"We're going to run with Kari here," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. "There was a (discussion of using Richard Bachman because of back-to-backs), but Kari is feeling pretty good right now. ... He wants to play and we need at least three more wins, so we've got to find them anywhere we can."

It's not like Lehtonen has been overworked lately. Friday's game will be only his seventh straight start and his 10th in the last 12 games.

It doesn't look like Radek Dvorak (ankle), Eric Nystrom (leg) or Mark Fistric (abdominal strain) will be ready for Friday's game. Fistric, who has missed the last four games, has resumed skating.

Reilly Smith to make NHL debut tonight

March, 28, 2012
Reilly Smith, signed to an entry-level contract on Sunday, will make his NHL debut tonight when the Dallas Stars take on the Oilers in Edmonton. Smith is expected to start the game on the fourth line.

“I’m just trying to get my feet wet, try to bring as much energy as I can,” Smith said. “Try not to turn the puck over too much and get it deep. Just try to limit my speed and limit turnovers.”

When it was pointed out to Smith that he is a goal scorer, the 20-year-old winger had this to say.

“I am not going to pass up shots for sure,” Smith said. “If I get the opportunity I am going to use the assets I have. If that comes around that’s great, but first of all I want to make sure I am not a liability on defense.”

Smith is expected to open the game on a line with Ryan Garbutt and Tom Wandell.

“I think we just start him and see how he goes, let him get the jitters out and then let the game dictate how you use him and let his play dictate how you use him,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “We have no big visions of grandeur. We want to get him in, get him accustomed and see how he goes."

Radek Dvorak (ankle), Erik Nystrom (leg) and Mark Fistric (abdominal strain) are all out tonight. Dvorak and Nystrom are day-to-day and are doubtful for Friday. Fistric is not expected to play on the road trip.

Here’s the projected Dallas lineup for tonight.




Mark Fistric out at least one week

March, 22, 2012
DALLAS -- Stars defenseman Mark Fistric is expected to miss at least one week with an abdominal strain. He was injured in Tuesday's 4-3 shootout win over Phoenix.

"It will be a week for so for sure, and then after that it will be day-to-day," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said of Fistric's status.

With Fistric out, Adam Pardy will come in and be paired with Trevor Daley on the blue line.

The Canucks will be without left wing Daniel Sedin, who was knocked out of last night's game after he took an elbow to the head from Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith. Sedin is heading back to Vancouver this afternoon for further evaluation, according to a team official.

Kari Lehtonen is in net for the Stars. Cory Schneider is the likely starter for the Canucks.

Here are the probable lineups for the two teams:






Raymond-H. Sedin-Burrows


FRISCO -- Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn said he is feeling fine after taking a couple of hard hits in Tuesday night's 4-3 shootout win over Phoenix at American Airlines Center.

"Feeling fine, normal," Benn said.

The first hit came when Phoenix captain Shane Doan caught in him in the head with an elbow. Doan, who received an elbowing minor during the game for the hit, faces possible suspension. He has a disciplinary hearing with the league later this afternoon. Benn was asked if he was disappointed with Doan's hit.

"No, it's hockey. It's so fast out there, things happen," Benn said. "I'll let the league deal with it."

Benn also was shaken up in overtime when he was hit hard into the boards by Phoenix's Antoine Vermette. Benn received some assistance in the tunnel leading to the locker room, but returned in time for the shootout.

"It was a tough play. I was tripped into the boards and slid in there," Benn said. "It was a little bit of a scramble. I fell into the boards pretty hard, got up and toe-picked (fell donw) and skated off."

Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said Benn will be fine for Thursday's game against Vancouver.

Defenseman Mark Fistric is out for Thurday's game with abdominal strain. He left the game in the second period and did not return.

"Fisty is out. He's a got a little ab strain. He's going to be a day-to-day guy. He's a little sore today," Gulutzan said. "Pards (Adam Pardy) will come in tomorrow."

The Stars held an optional skate today. Goalies Kari Lehtonen and Richard Bachman were both on the ice along with Pardy, Philip Larsen, Toby Petersen, Ryan Garbutt, Tomas Vincour and Jordie Benn.
DALLAS -- Dallas Stars defenseman Mark Fistric left Tuesday's game with what the Stars said was an upper body injury. After the game, Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said it was a pulled muscle.

"We'll see how he responds tomorrow," Gulutzan said.

Fistric left the game early in the second period with the injury.

Stars forward Jamie Benn was skaken up a couple of times in the game, but Gulutzan said Benn appeared to be fine. Benn took an elbow to the head in the second period from Coyotes captain Shane Doan, but returned to the game.

In overtime, he went hard into the boards during a collision with Coyotes forward Antoine Vermette, but was back on the bench at the end of the game and took part in the shootout.

"He's a tough, tough kid. I haven checked on him. I don't know if it was his wind of whatever. They just told he would be back for the shootout," Gulutzan said. "I didn't see the hit (in overtime). I am assuming everything is fine."
DALLAS -- Dallas Stars defenseman Mark Fistric chuckled when it was mentioned to him that Tuesday’s game against the Phoenix Coyotes was the biggest of the season -- until the next game.

“Yeah, we’ve been saying that for the last 30 games,” Fistric said with a laugh. “But it’s huge. You look at the standings and where everyone is right now, it’s a huge game. Any way you look at it, it is game one of the playoffs for us.”

After a three day break, Tuesday’s game against the Coyotes kicks off the final ten games of the regular season that will determine if the Stars will make the playoffs.

“We are looking at these ten games like a playoff series,” said Stars captain Brenden Morrow. “We want to win game one.”

The Stars enter Tuesday’s game tied with the Coyotes at 83 points, but the Stars hold the Pacific Division lead because they have played one fewer game than Phoenix and have the better points percentage. A win and the Stars hold onto the division lead. A loss and the Stars are looking up at the Coyotes in the Pacific.

It's not just a battle for the division lead. It's a battle to keep from falling out of the top eight. Both teams are just one point up on ninth place in conference and a loss, especially a regulation loss, moves one of them closer to being out of a playoff spot.

“It’s so tight that one or two games and you can drop out that fast. We understand that and we know what we have to do,” said Stars forward Michael Ryder. “It’s just a matter of us going out there and playing the way we can, and not focus too much on other teams and what they do.”

The two teams have followed similar paths to where they are now - the Stars holding the third seed in the West and the Coyotes sitting in the seventh spot. Both were out of a playoff spot at the All-Star break, but both have put together impressive runs after the break. Phoenix went 11-0-1 at one point, and the Stars were on a 10-0-1 run until losses to Winnipeg (Wednesday) and Chicago (Friday).

“We went on that run and were still not that far ahead. That’s just the way it is. You can’t afford to lose too many in a row,” said Ryder. “With ten games left we’ve got to give it all we can.”

This will be the sixth and final meeting between the two teams this season. The Stars are 2-2-1 in the series, and the Coyotes are 3-0-2, including victories in the last three games.

“It’s going to be a tough game against Phoenix. Both teams are fighting for their lives,” said Morrow. “It’s going to be the first team that blinks that is going to lose the game. We’ve got to play a full 60 minutes.”

And Fistric said it’s going to the Stars playing their game for 60 minutes to secure points against the well-disciplined, defensive-minded Coyotes.

“We’ve got to go in with the mentality to play our game and don’t shy away from it,” said Fistric. “That’s how Phoenix beats teams. They play consistently and force teams to shy away from their game. I think our plan has to be play Stars hockey, and play for a full 60 minutes.”

Notes: Souray, Dvorak probable for Tuesday

Stars defenseman Sheldon Souray (charley horse) and right wing Radek Dvorak (ankle) both practiced Monday and both are probable for Tuesday’s game against Phoenix. Souray has missed the last four games and Dvorak has missed the last three.

Brenden Morrow, Steve Ott both in tonight

March, 10, 2012
DALLAS -- Brenden Morrow and Steve Ott both will be in the lineup tonight when the Dallas Stars take on the Anaheim Ducks at American Airlines Center.

Morrow has missed the last 18 games with neck and back issues. He's expected to play on a line with Ott and Jamie Benn, and Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said they'll ease Morrow back into things.

"We're going to manage his minutes," Gulutzan said. "Probably between 10 and 12, or 10 and 14, somewhere in there for the first game in five-and-a-half weeks."

Ott missed the last game with back spasms, but said he felt fine after going through Saturday morning's skate.

"It feels good," Ott said. "I finally got it to loosen up with a lot of rehab over the past couple days."

With Ott and Morrow both returning, the Stars will have to scratch three forwards. Gulutzan said Toby Petersen will be one of the scratches, but the others would be game-time decisions.

With Sheldon Souray out with a lower body injury, Adam Pardy will be back in the lineup. He's expected to be paired with Philip Larsen. The other defensive pairings will be Alex Goligoski-Stephane Robidas and Mark Fistric-Trevor Daley.

Kari Lehtonen is in goal tonight.

Brenden Morrow getting closer to return

March, 10, 2012
FRISCO -- Dallas Stars captain Brenden Morrow is getting closer to returning to the lineup after missing the last 18 games with neck and back issues. The Stars took Morrow off injured reserve Friday, making him eligible to play Saturday night against the Anaheim Ducks at American Airlines Center.

Whether Morrow will play is still up in the air. That will be decided some time Saturday, after he goes through the team’s morning skate. If Morrow can’t play Saturday, he should be ready to go for Tuesday’s game at Minnesota.

"I think we'll see after the morning skate where he is at," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. "I would say Tuesday Brenden is for sure and tomorrow, we'll see after the morning skate."

Morrow hasn’t played since February 2. He’s spent a lot of time working off ice on the neck and back issues and resumed skating at the beginning of the month. He practiced with the team for the first time on Thursday and went through an optional practice Friday, wrapping up the day with some hard skating.

"Right now it's one day at a time. I got a good skate in today. I'll see how I feel when I wake up tomorrow," Morrow said.

As for the injury, there have been no problems.

“The pain is gone,” he said. “It’s been four weeks now of trying to get the back to settle down. It feels really good.”

Whether he plays Saturday or Tuesday, Morrow is itching to get back in the lineup to help the surging Stars, who have climbed to the top of the Pacific Division with an 8-0-1 run.

“This is where I want to be, a part of this,” Morrow said. “The team is on a roll and I’d like to get back in there and help them out.”

And the Stars are looking forward to the return of their captain.

“Brenden is a great player and we can't wait to get him back. He's our captain, he's our leader, and we want him back healthy,” said Gulutzan. “There's no question getting him back in our lineup makes us a better hockey club.”

Notes: Souray out

*Stars forward Sheldon Souray, who left Thursday’s game with a lower body injury, won’t play Saturday. Gulutzan said Souray is 50-50 to play in the back-to-back games in Minnesota and Winnipeg on Tuesday and Wednesday.

*Stars forward Steve Ott, who missed Thursday’s game with back spasms, is questionable for Saturday.

*Defenseman Mark Fistric, who left Thursday’s game with a hand injury, is fine and is expected to play Saturday.
FRISCO, Texas -- Stars defenseman Sheldon Souray will miss Saturday's game against Anaheim with a lower body injury. Souray left Thursday night's shootout win over San Jose in the second period with the injury and did not return.

"He's a little sore today. He won't be a game player for tomorrow," Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said. "I'd say he's 50-50 for the Tuesday-Wednesday games (at Minnesota and Winnipeg)."

Steve Ott, who missed Thursday night's game with back spasms, is questionable for Saturday.

"We'll see after the morning skate," Gulutzan said.

Brenden Morrow, who has missed the last 18 games with neck/back issue, took part in Friday's optional skate. He's getting closer to returning, but whether he'll play Saturday is up in the air.

"Right now it's one day at a time. I got a good skate in today. I'll see how I feel when I wake up tomorrow," Morrow said. "I think tomorrow is questionable. If I don't get in there tomorrow, I am expected in Minnesota at least."

Morrow will skate with the team Saturday morning and determination on his status will be made then.

"I think we'll see after the morning skate where he is at," Gulutzan said. "Brenden and I are going to talk here shortly to see where he is at. I would say Tuesday Brenden is for sure and tomorrow, we'll see after the morning skate."

Defenseman Mark Fistric, who left Thursday's game early in the third period, is fine, according to Gulutzan.

"He'll be a game player tomorrow," Gulutzan said.

The players taking part in the optional skate today were Morrow, Kari Lehtonen, Richard Bachman, Jake Dowell, Tomas Vincour, Ryan Garbutt, Toby Petersen and Adam Pardy.

Lehtonen will start in goal tomorrow.