What to look for in Stars-Ducks playoff series

Posted Tuesday, Apr. 15, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
A

Stars vs. Ducks

Game 1

@ Anaheim,

9 tonight

FSSW, NBCSN

Game 2

@ Anaheim,

9 p.m. Friday

FSSW, NBCSN

Game 3

@ Dallas

8:30 p.m. Mon.

KTXA/21, NBCSN

Game 4

@ Dallas

7 p.m. April 23

FSSW, CNBC

*Game 5

@ Anaheim

9:30 p.m. April 25

FSSW, NBCSN

*Game 6

@ Dallas

TBD

FSSW

*Game 7

@ Anaheim

TBD

FSSW

*If necessary

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Dallas Stars coach Lindy Ruff says the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs is the most challenging because it is a much faster-paced, intense brand of hockey, unlike anything seen in the regular season.

Dallas begins a best-of-seven first-round series Wednesday in Anaheim.

The Stars won the regular-season series 2-1.

Here are five things to watch in the playoff series:

1. Culture adjustment

The Stars are making its first playoff appearance since the 2007-2008 season. Twelve of their 24 players are making their first appearance in the playoffs, including captain Jamie Benn. They have six Stanley Cup champions on their roster, but as Ruff said, the dynamics of the game change in the postseason. Anaheim was in the playoffs last season, losing in the first round, and has 19 players with playoff experience and four Cup champions.

2 Lehtonen in spotlight

Goaltender Kari Lehtonen was the league’s leader in games played, but he is getting his first look at the Ducks this season. Former Stars backup Dan Ellis started the first two meetings, followed by American Hockey League call-up Jack Campbell starting the last meeting. Lehtonen has limited playoff experience (2 games in 2007 with Atlanta), but that’s why veteran Tim Thomas (2011 Cup champion with Boston) was acquired from Florida in March.

3 Return of Robidas

In early March, the Stars traded veteran defenseman Stephane Robidas to Anaheim for a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft. At the time, Robidas hadn’t played since Nov. 29 because of a broken leg. Little did he know that he would be facing his former team in the playoffs. Robidas played 14 games for the Ducks this season, scoring 5 points on 4 assists.

4 Last Finnish call

Teemu Selanne will retire after this season at the age of 43. Selanne is the Ducks’ all-time leader in games (846), points (933), goals (433), power play goals (117), game-winning goals (54), overtime goals (5), hat tricks (9), assists (500) and plus/minus (117). Selanne sits fourth among Ducks in playoff points against the Stars (two series) with four.

5 The key matchup

Dallas general manager Jim Nill said he believes the matchup comes down to the Stars’ top two, Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin, outplaying the Ducks’ top tandem, Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry. The Ducks’ top two forwards outscored the Stars in the season series, recording 3 goals and 6 assists. Benn and Seguin combined for 1 goal and 2 assists. Getzlaf had a career-best 31 goals this season. Seguin led the Stars in goals (37) and points (87).

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
Phoenix111st Qtr 6:40 | Box
Indiana10TV: FSN-AZ, FSN-IN
Miami161st Qtr 6:19 | Box
Orlando10TV: Sun Sports, FSN-FL
Toronto 11/22 7:30 PM ET
Cleveland TV: TSN, FSN-OH
Philadelphia 11/22 7:30 PM ET
New York TV: TCN-PHI, MSG
Dallas 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Houston TV: FSN-SW, CSN-HOU
Sacramento 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: CSN-CA, FSN-N
Washington 11/22 8:30 PM ET
Milwaukee TV: CSN-DC+, FSN-WI
Brooklyn 11/22 8:30 PM ET
San Antonio TV: YES, FSN-SW
New Orleans 11/22 9:00 PM ET
Utah TV: NBA TV, ROOT-NW
Full Scoreboard
Week 12Full Scoreboard
Thursday
Kansas City20Final | Box
Oakland «24Gridiron Replay
Sunday
Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Atlanta TV: CBS
Tampa Bay 1:00 PM ET
Chicago TV: FOX
Cincinnati 1:00 PM ET
Houston TV: CBS
Jacksonville 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: CBS
Green Bay 1:00 PM ET
Minnesota TV: FOX
Detroit 1:00 PM ET
New England TV: FOX
Tennessee 1:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: CBS
St. Louis 4:05 PM ET
San Diego TV: FOX
Arizona 4:05 PM ET
Seattle TV: FOX
Miami 4:25 PM ET
Denver TV: CBS
Washington 4:25 PM ET
San Francisco TV: CBS
Dallas 8:30 PM ET
NY Giants TV: NBC
Monday
NY Jets 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: CBS
Baltimore 8:30 PM ET
New Orleans TV: ESPN
Full Scoreboard
Saturday, November 22Full Scoreboard
St. Louis «3Final | Box
Ottawa2
Montreal01st Prd 18:45 | Box
Boston0TV: NHLN, TVA, NESN
Detroit01st Prd 17:29 | Box
Toronto0TV: CBC, FSN-DET
Minnesota01st Prd 12:52 | Box
Tampa Bay0TV: FSN-N+, SUN
Pittsburgh01st Prd 15:08 | Box
NY Islanders0TV: ROOT-PIT, MSG+
Columbus11st Prd 15:24 | Box
Philadelphia1TV: FSN-OH, CSN-PHI
Buffalo01st Prd 12:49 | Box
Washington0TV: MSG-BUF, CSN-DC
Florida 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Nashville TV: FSN-FL
Los Angeles 11/22 8:00 PM ET
Dallas TV: FSN-W, FSN-SW+
Carolina 11/22 9:00 PM ET
Colorado TV: FSN-CAR, Altitude
New Jersey 11/22 10:00 PM ET
Calgary TV: MSG+2, SNET
Chicago 11/22 10:00 PM ET
Edmonton TV: CBC, TVA Sports 2, WGN
Arizona 11/22 10:30 PM ET
San Jose TV: FSN-AZ, CSN-CA
Full Scoreboard