Ducks-Stars Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated February 07, 2013
Thanks in part to a red-hot rookie goaltender, the Anaheim Ducks look like a vastly improved team from the one that flopped against the Dallas Stars last season. The visiting Ducks could start Victor Fasth in goal as they search for a fifth straight victory Friday night in Dallas, where they failed to solve Kari Lehtonen in their last two visits. Anaheim (7-1-1) opened a six-game trip Wednesday with a 3-0 victory over Colorado. Fasth made 31 saves for his first shutout as he lowered his goals-against average to an NHL-best 0.98. "It's nothing you go and think about. You just try to do your best and help the team out as much as you can,'' said the 30-year-old rookie, who was the Swedish Elite League's goaltender of the year the last two seasons. "I'm really glad I had (the shutout). It's a little bonus. Most important thing is we got the win and started off this road trip really good.'' Fasth could be the difference Friday for the Ducks, who went 1-5-0 against the Stars (5-5-1) last season. Lehtonen went 4-1-0 with a 1.40 GAA in the season series, including shutouts in Anaheim's last two trips to the American Airlines Center. While Lehtonen is a good bet to make his ninth start of the season, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau has to choose between the surging Fasth and Jonas Hiller, who is 3-1-1 with a 3.54 GAA. Hiller has posted a 3.04 GAA in losing his last six starts against Dallas. Fasth, meanwhile, is the first goalie to win his first four starts since Nolan Schaefer did it for San Jose in 2005. Boudreau has not named his starter for Friday. "Hilly will be playing very soon,'' Boudreau said. "He will be doing the same thing, I hope.'' Boudreau has received strong recent production from defenseman Sheldon Souray, who has three goals and an assist over a three-game point streak. Souray signed with Anaheim as a free agent after he had 21 points in 64 games for the Stars a season ago. Saku Koivu also has four points (two goals, two assists) over his last three games, and he thinks that the Ducks must improve. "We gave up too many 2-on-1s, 3-on-2s, probably more than we've had in the last five games," Koivu said. Dallas is also unhappy with its play despite winning three of four after Jaromir Jagr scored in overtime in Wednesday's 3-2 victory at Edmonton. "It's definitely not pretty out there," said Jamie Benn, who had a goal and an assist. "We're getting the job done right now but we've got to get better as a team, do the right things, get pucks deep." Benn led Dallas with eight points against Anaheim last season while Michael Ryder and Alex Goligoski each tied for the team lead with three goals. Anaheim's Teemu Selanne had a team-high five points in the season series and Koivu a team-best three goals but Ryan Getzlaf came up empty in the six games. Getzlaf, with a goal and four assists, has one point in each of his last five games. Dallas has been short-handed a league-high 54 times. Anaheim owns one of the NHL's best power plays at 26.7 percent.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Several NBA executives have concerns about Lonzo Ball’s father

Kim Mulkey gives awful post-game speech about Baylor scandal

Bill Walton goes shirtless during ESPN broadcast to the dismay of one woman

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker