What to watch in tonight's game

There will be a few worth watching when the Stars face Columbus tonight.

Among them:

  • Will Matt Niskanen play and how will he play? The young defenseman was a healthy scratch Monday, and Stars coach Marc Crawford said he wanted to see him compete harder. We'll see if it was simply a one-game break or if Niskanen gets some more time off the ice. If he returns, I'll be interested to see how he looks.

  • The injury to Jere Lehtinen (sore groin) forced Crawford to change his lines on Monday. I thought the Brenden Morrow-Tom Wandell-Jamie Benn like looked very good. I'd like to see more of them. We'll see how Crawford handles the lines.

  • Do the Stars come out with a strong effort again? Crawford said if his team played like it did Monday, they'd win most of the games they play. The question is can they consistently have that kind of effort? My bet is they come out strong against Columbus.

  • When will the Stars actually have to kill off a penalty? That's still the strangest thing about Monday's game. Dallas never had to kill off a penalty. It's the first time that has happened to Dallas since April 1999.