Forward Jaromir Jagr has a lower back/hip issue and may not play Saturday when the Stars take on the St. Louis Blues at American Airlines Center.
Jagr left Thursday’s game late in the third period, and did not return. He did not practice Friday.
“He’ll probably be day-to-day,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “It’s the lower back, he’s a little stiff. We’ll see how he is in the next couple days. He knows himself better than we do. He’s stiff in his lower back today, and hip.
“We’ll see how he is tomorrow and right now I would say it is 60-40 no, or maybe even more. We’ll see how he is in the morning and we’ll re-evaluate.”
If Jagr can’t play, then Tomas Vincour will slide into the lineup. The Stars called up Vincour from the Texas Stars of the AHL on Thursday.
Ray Whitney and Derek Roy both had maintenance days, but Gulutzan said they both are expected to play Saturday.
Aaron Rome, who has missed the first four games of the season due to a groin issue, will play Saturday. Gulutzan said he is not sure which defenseman will come out of the lineup to make room for Rome.
Cristopher Nilstorp will get the start in goal Saturday. It will be the second NHL start for Nilstorp, who was excellent in Sunday’s 1-0 loss at Minnesota, stopping 31 of 32 shots.
Kari Lehtonen was given the day off from practice.
Jamie Benn arrives
Stars forward Jamie Benn, who agreed to terms on a five-year, $26.25 million contract on Thursday, practiced with the team on Friday.
“It’s great to be back in here and skate with the guys,” said Benn. “I had a great first practice.”
Benn agreed to terms with the team yesterday afternoon, almost three weeks after the NHL lockout had ended and the two sides picked up talks again. He’s not expected to play Saturday because he needs to get some immigration paper work filed through the system. He and the Stars are hoping he’ll be ready to go Monday in Columbus.
“I am going to definitely push myself in these three practices I get, hopefully I can get in there Monday and jump right into it,” Benn said. “Be a top six guy and contribute.”
Being a top six guy raises the possibility of playing with Jaromir Jagr.
“I’m not too sure who I am more excited to be playing with – Jagr, (Ray) Whitney or my brother again,” Benn said. “Having Ray and Jaromir here is something very special for the Dallas organization. It’s going to be fun to learn from them, and see how they go about their business.”
The Stars didn’t run lines in practice, so Benn didn’t skate with anyone in particular on Friday. Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said Benn could start between Whitney and Michael Ryder when he does get into the lineup.
“Then we’ll go from there and see what lines are rolling, who is healthy and who is not,” Gulutzan said.
As for how Benn looked in his first practice, Gulutzan offered this assessment.
“It was pretty good. He didn’t look too, too bad,” Gulutzan said. “He looked fine out there. We’ve got a few days with him to get him up to speed.”
Jamie Benn’s contract
|*Limited no-trade clause in final year|