Stars' Modano tests injured left knee

DALLAS -- Dallas Stars center Mike Modano said Saturday morning that he's planning on playing in today's game against the Phoenix Coyotes at American Airlines Center.

Modano tested his injured left knee -- he tweaked it against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday after landing on it awkwardly -- and said it felt fine.

"It felt weak in Columbus and I couldn't really skate on it, but I knew if it was just a bruise that if I gave it a couple of days it would be fine," Modano said. "It feels a lot better."

Modano did not play in Thursday's 2-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets and didn't practice Friday to give the knee more rest.

Modano, 39, was in the middle of a hot streak when the injury occurred. He has seven goals in his last 10 games and is getting more playing time because of injuries to center Tom Wandell (out for season after surgery to repair a torn ACL) and Mike Ribeiro (throat). The Stars expect Ribeiro to return soon, possibly as early as Tuesday's game in Chicago.

"He's been a big part of our team offensively of late," Stars coach Marc Crawford said about Modano. "It's about freshness for Mike. That goes for any player. If he's fatigued, you don't have as much offensive output. It magnifies as you get older. Mike has so much skill and gives us a lot in so many areas."

Richard Durrett covers the Dallas Stars for ESPN Dallas. You can follow him on Twitter or leave a question for his weekly mailbag.