The Chicago Blackhawks hope to get the front end of a back-to-back weekend off to a successful start Saturday night in Dallas. The 'Hawks are attempting to cool off the Stars and win the first of six meetings between the two teams.
The Stars have the hot hand coming into the contest, winning three straight on the road this past week. The Hawks need to be ready to put in some extra work to break Dallas' recent streak. Each of the last four Stars victories has come in overtime or in a shootout.
After dropping a 3-2 overtime decision to Colorado Nov. 1, Dallas packed its suitcase and picked up shootout wins in Ottawa last Sunday and in Boston Tuesday. The Stars are coming off a 4-3 overtime win in Detroit Thursday night that saw them rally from a two-goal deficit.
Rich Peverley netted the game-winner late in extra time. Peverley, who won the shootout for his team in Boston, and Tyler Seguin should be familiar faces to 'Hawks fans, having last skated against Chicago with the Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final.
Seguin, along with center Jamie Benn, leads Dallas in scoring. Both players have six goals and nine helpers entering the contest.
Kari Lehtonen has been in net for each of his team's last eight contests. For that reason, the 'Hawks may possibly see Dan Ellis in the crease Saturday. He hasn't appeared for Dallas since going 1-4 when Lehtonen was injured last month.
The 'Hawks have had success against both goalies, though Lehtonen possesses a 4-3-1 mark over Chicago in his career. Lehtonen has a 2.52 goals against average against the 'Hawks, while Ellis has surrendered 2.56 goals a game to Chicago shooters.
The Blackhawks have won four of their last five games, the only loss coming in overtime to Calgary Nov. 3. Corey Crawford looks to be the starter in goal again for Chicago.
Duncan Keith is still looking for his first goal of the 2013-14 season. However, he has assists in each of his last five games and in seven of his last eight. He has 12 points on the season. Patrick Sharp has overcome a goal-scoring drought to begin the season and has three in his last five games.
Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane lead the way among Chicago scorers with 14 points each on the season. Kane, who leads the team with nine goals, has scored in each of the last two games for Chicago. He also has five points in his last five games.
Saturday's tilt is set to begin in Dallas at 7 p.m. CT.