Get used to the Texas Stars defensive pairings from Friday’s 4-1 victory against Charlotte, because that will likely be the go-to group for the rest of the season.
Patrik Nemeth played his third game back from injury and was paired with Jyrki Jokipakka. The other defensive pairings consisted of Jamie Oleksiak with Derek Meech and Maxime Fortunus with Cameron Gaunce.
“I think a little bit, there all good players and they all can play well,” Stars coach Willie Desjardins said. “That six are certainly a good six.”
William Wrenn and Hubert Labrie where the defensive scratches for Texas on Friday.
Fortunus and Meech may be scratched in the future because of the veteran rule.
Francis Wathier was the vet scratch Friday, and Desjardins said he’s handling the veteran scratches on a “game-to-game” basis.
“It’s hard on Wathier, he’s a good players,” Desjardins said. “He’s played well for us. It’s always unfair when they have to sit out, but that’s numbers.”
One of Cristopher Nilstorp’s bigger mistakes of the night turned into an assist when Mike Hedden scored the Stars fourth goal on a breakaway.
Nilstorp tried to glove down the puck between the hashmarks, but whiffed and luckily the puck skittered to Justin Dowling. Dowling then fired a pass to Hedden who scored on a breakaway.
“No I was just lucky,” Nilstorp said. “That was bad of me, but something good happened at least.”
It was his third assist of the season.
Nilstorp also stopped 36 of 37 shots, it was his best performance this season when facing more than 20 shots in a game. He does have one shutout this season, but he only faced 19 shots in that victory.
Pink in the Rink Jerseys impress players
Many of the Stars and coach Willie Desjardins were impressed with the black jerseys with pink trim.
“There nice, I might bid on mine actually,” Brett Ritchie said.
Historically, the Stars have played well during Pink in the Rink. In five games in specialty jerseys for breast cancer awareness the Stars are 4-1.
Texas has hosted Pink in the Rink in each of the last four seasons. During the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons it was just one game, before switching to a weekend back-to-back last season.
The Stars locker room was a bit divided on Olympic allegiances Thursday when Canada, Finland, Sweden and the United States played Olympic semifinal games.
Canada and Sweden will play in the gold medal game Sunday, pitting the two Swedes – Nemeth and Nilstorp – against a large pool of Canadians.
“We haven’t really talked about it yet,” Ritchie said. “I’m sure we’ll arrange something, a few bets, and it will be fun.”