Colorado Avalanche vs. Dallas Stars - 12/16/13
Dallas Stars (15-11-5) at Colorado Avalanche (21-9-1)
NHL Hockey: Monday, December 16, 2013 at 9:00 pm (Pepsi Center)
The Line: Colorado Avalanche -157 / Dallas Stars +143 --- Over/Under: 5.5 See the Latest Odds
At 15-11-5 the Dallas Stars would be in a pretty good position to make a run at a playoff spot in just about any other division than the Central. Instead they're stuck in fifth place, eight points behind the third place Avalanche whom they take on Monday night. This division is doing Dallas no favors in the grand scheme of things but the Stars are loaded with young kids that come to play each and every night. Tyler Seguin has looked like a new person since being shipped to Dallas in the offseason and the Stars are playing an exciting brand of hockey that make them a much watch whenever they're on. Dallas snapped a two game losing streak against the Winnipeg Jets and Seguin got things going with his 16th goal of the season giving the Stars a 1-0 lead. Valeri Nichuskin made it a 2-1 lead after one period of play and Jamie Benn scored twice in the second period before Seguin added his second to put the game out of reach. Kari Lehtonen allowed four goals on 38 shots but thanks to his offense was able to pick up his 12th win of the season. This is a big match up for Dallas on Monday night because Colorado is one of the clubs they're going to have to catch if they want to be in the post season this year. Colorado comes into this one having lost three of their last four games and scored just three total goals in those losses. Saturday night it was Maxime Talbot who gave Colordao a 1-0 lead over the Minnesota Wild but it would be the only offense of the night for the Avalanche. Minnesota would score to tie the game with just under four minutes to play in regulation and send the game into overtime. Matt Duchene scored in the shootout for Colordao but P.A. Parenteau and Ryan O'Reilly were denied, and Semyon Varlamov allowed both Minnesota shooters to score as the Avalanche fell by a final of 2-1. Colorado has had a great start to the year but they're still a young club that is going to have some growing pains. They've hit a little bit of a rut here as of late and this isn't an easy match up for them on Monday night.
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports