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Slumping Stars to Play Without Sharp
Thursday, March 3
Dallas acquired the longtime Chicago Blackhawk on July 10 in a trade with the defending Stanley Cup champions. This season Sharp has tallied 47 points, the fourth-most on a Stars team with 83 points coming into Thursday.
The Stars are centered around young stars Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin (26 and 24, respectively), but the addition of the 34-year-old Sharp has been a vital move for Dallas this year. While splitting time with 23-year-old Mattias Janmark on the second line, Sharp provides depth for a team second in the NHL at 3.15 goals per game thanks to his 17 goals on the year.
Losing Sharp comes at an inopportune time for Dallas, as it continues to keep pace with the Chicago Blackhawks for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference playoffs. The Stars have lost four in a row—three of those defeats at home—while accumulating only three points since Feb. 20.
If Sharp is out for the entire seven days, he could return for the March 11 showdown against his former Chicago teammates in Dallas. There's also a possibility he could return on March 8 when the Stars play the Montreal Canadiens.
Antoine Roussel is expected to be the primary left winger on the third line, with Janmark moving up to the second line. The Stars will need to replace Sharp's playmaking from the left side, as his 30 assists are the fourth-most on the Stars' roster.