Pittsburgh Penguins vs Dallas Stars: Predictions, Odds and Roster Notes

How to Watch

Where: American Airlines Center – Dallas, TX.

When: Saturday, March 23, 8PM EST.

How (TV/Radio): FSW+, ATT Sportsnet Pittsburgh | XLIVE, SportsRadio 1310, WFAN

Pittsburgh Penguins (Away)

Head Coach: Mike Sullivan {All-Time 239-146-15-56 PIT, BOS}

At the time of writing, the Pittsburgh Penguins have a season record of 39-24-11, have gone 6-2-2 in their last ten games, and have lost three games in a row. That being said, they still in third place in the Metropolitan division (two points ahead of the first wildcard) and, being the offensive juggernaut that they are, can never be counted out of a game.

It is most likely that forward Evgeni Malkin, who is week-to-week with an upper-body issue, will hit the road with the team, but that doesn’t write off the Pens. Superstars Sidney Crosby, Phil Kessel, Jake Guentzel, et al, will be on the ice to cause problems for the Dallas Stars and their defense corps. The Penguins rank sixth in the league in goals scored and eighth in the league in shots for. Their shooting percentage is ranked eighth as well, and they have a fifth-place overall powerplay unit.

Pittsburgh’s challenges will come on the backend, as they rank lower than their opponents in goals allowed, shots allowed, penalties taken, and penalty killing.

Defensively, the Pens could be in for some good news as defenseman Olli Maatta has been cleared for contact. He may be a game-time decision, but going down the stretch, his return as a difference-making player will only strengthen the Pens roster heading into the playoffs.

Goaltender Matt Murray should be in net for the Pittsburgh Penguins in this game. Murray has a season record of 24-12-5, a goals against average of 2.80, and a save percentage of .917. He has four shutouts on the season.

Dallas Stars (Home)

Head Coach: Jim Montgomery {All-Time 38-29-6 DAL}

The Dallas Stars have gone 38-29-6 on the season thus far. They are 7-2-1 in their last ten games and currently sit in the Western conference’s first wildcard spot with 82 points. Goaltender Ben Bishop is also coming off of a record-setting run of over 230 minutes and 53 seconds of shutout time in the crease.

As mentioned earlier, Dallas will need to keep their discipline in this game. It not crazy to think that if they can sneak one or two past Penguins’ goalie Matt Murray, the Stars will focus on their strong defensive play for the remainder of the game. The Dallas Stars rank second in the NHL for goals allowed and goaltender Ben Bishop has been on a tear as of late. They are also ninth in the league for fewest penalties, averaging under eight minutes per game. Their penalty kill also ranks fifth in the league.

Goalie Ben Bishop is expected to get the start against the high-octane Pittsburgh Penguins. Bishop is 25-14-2 on the season. He has a goals against average of 2.05 and a save percentage of .932. He has registered six shutouts at the time of writing.

These two teams last met on November 21, 2018. The Pittsburgh Penguins came out victorious over the Dallas Stars with a final score of 5-1.

What’s At Stake?

Dallas, at the moment, has more to gain from this win. They are currently in the first wildcard spot and would like to move ahead of the pack into a more secure space heading into the postseason. They have what it takes to take these two points away from the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Penguins, however, can never be written off – even without Evgeni Malkin. It is still within their grasp to rise up in the rankings as they are only five points back of the Metropolitan division-leading Washington Capitals.

Questions to answer

Whose special team unit will come out on top – Pittsburgh’s fifth-place powerplay or Dallas’ fifth-place penalty kill?

Will this become a showdown between two elite goaltenders? Will Matt Murray and Ben Bishop steal the show?

Can the Stars contain the Penguins offense? Can the Penguins penetrate the Stars’ defense?

Pittsburgh Penguins Injury Report

F Evgeni Malkin – day-to-day (upper-body)

F Zach Aston-Reese – day-to-day (lower-body)

D Chad Ruhwedel – day-to-day (upper-body)

D Olli Maatta – IR (upper-body)

Dallas Stars Injury Report

D Taylor Fedun – day-to-day (illness)

F Mats Zuccarello – day-to-day (fractured arm)

F Tyler Pitlick – IR (wrist)

F Martin Hanzal – IR (upper-body)

D Marc Methot – IR (lower-body)

D Stephen Johns – IR (undisclosed)

Pittsburgh Penguins at Dallas Stars Predictions and Odds

The odds will be updated as they are made available.

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