The Dallas Stars (32-28-7-3, 33-37 ATS for minus-15.85 units) might be drowning in red ink in the Central Division basement, but their Stanley Cup dreams aren’t over yet. The Stars can still make a playoff push in the Western Conference, and while their Cup chances are a slim 500/1 as we go to press
, they can take a big step forward by beating the Pittsburgh Penguins Thursday night. Game time is 8:30 PM ET on the NHL Network.
The Penguins (39-20-4-6, 32-37 ATS for plus-4.27 units) are in third place in the Metropolitan Division and should make the playoffs, but they suddenly find themselves vulnerable with two more players on the injured list. Evgeni Malkin (28 goals, 40 assists, 8.9 Point Shares) is expected to sit out for one to two weeks with a lower body injury. Patric Hornqvist (23 goals, 22 assists, 6.4 PS) is also on the shelf this week with an undisclosed issue.
This could open the door for Dallas. The Stars have the proverbial puncher’s chance at home; they’re second in the league in scoring at 3.07 goals per game, and with Tyler Seguin (32 goals, 30 assists, 8.3 PS) back in the lineup, Dallas has won three of its last five games.