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Stars Brace For Visit From Blackhawks Saturday

Posted by Don Melrose on 3/14/2013 10:01:28 PM

When the Chicago Blackhawks followed up an NHL-record 24-straight games with at least a point to open the online betting season with consecutive losses to two sub-.500 teams, it wasn’t as though anybody was going to consider it that big of a hit. The Dallas Stars certainly understand how dangerous the Blackhawks are, and will brace for a showdown with Chicago this Saturday night. The Blackhawks don’t have anything to prove already 19 points clear of the 11th-place Stars, but they are only four points up on the Anaheim Ducks for top spot and will look to stop the bleeding as soon as possible.

Chicago Blackhawks @ Dallas Stars
Saturday March 16, 2013 – 8:00 PM ET
American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas
NHL Sportsbook Line: Chicago – 130

The Stars don’t have a record streak to lean back on, and so far this season there is nothing to merit them being in the conversation among the best in the NHL. Dallas is fighting for a playoff spot right now, and with just four points separating fourth place from 10th in the conference, they have an excellent chance to gain some ground.

NHL Betting Preview: Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawks did a little bit of everything during their record point streak, winning close games and blowouts, and proving they can win with both offense and defense. Chicago ranks sixth in the NHL with an average 3.2 goals per game, and has been even better defensively, raking second in the league with an average of just 2.1 goals against. The sixth-ranked penalty kill in the NHL has been a big part of the team’s success keeping pucks out of its net, while superstar players like Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews have paced an offense that gets contributions from all four of its lines.

NHL Betting Preview: Dallas Stars

The Stars won’t be able to focus on both Toews and Kane with each player on a different line, so they will have to pick their poison. Dallas ranks just 18th in the NHL in goals per game allowed despite some brilliant play from netminder Kari Lehtonen at times, and may have a tough time containing a Chicago offense that beat them in overtime the first time around. Jaromir Jagr has quietly led the Stars in both goals and points with 10 and 18 respectively, but he will need some help for Dallas to have any chance at being able to keep up with the smooth-skating Blackhawks.

NHL Betting Preview: Outlook & Pick

There isn’t even one other sports betting team in the NHL that has the level of depth that the Blackhawks boast, and it’s incredible to think of what this team could do in the playoffs if it gets hot again. Chicago failed to respond after having its record start to the season snapped by the Colorado Avalanche, so look for them to bounce back with a much better effort against a Stars’ team they already beat in their first meeting of the year.

NHL Betting Pick: Chicago Blackhawks

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