Morning Skate: Texas Stars set for opening night dress rehearsal in final preseason game

Radek Faksa is working on his transition as a defensive center. (Photo by Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)

Radek Faksa is working on his transition as a defensive center. (Photo by Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)

CEDAR PARK — Radek Faksa, Jason Dickinson, and Remi Elie are expected to play in the Texas Stars preseason game against the San Antonio Rampage after spending extended time with the Dallas Stars during NHL preseason.

Dickinson, a first-round pick, drew a favorable assignment in practice yesterday working on the left wing with Travis Morin and Brandon Ranford as part of Texas’ projected top line for tonight.

Elie was sharing a line with Justin Dowling and Devin Shore in practice, while Faksa was centering a third line with Derek Hulak and Branden Troock in practice.

Texas was running six lines in practice, but the likely fourth line was the one consisting of Cory Kaye, Gemel Smith, and Matej Stransky.

It’s likely going to be a “dress rehearsal” type game for Texas, and the lineup is similar to the projected opening night roster. San Antonio is taking a similar approach after both teams went with young lineups Friday.

While they wish they where still in camp with Dallas, Dickinson and Elie both said they plan to bring an “NHL approach” to the AHL preseason game.

“Just be crisp, fast, be a professional,” Dickinson said. “Everybody there is at a level of intensity that I’m still adjusting to coming off of junior. That extended chance game me a look at what the best players in the game bring to practice.”

Expect all five NHL-contracted defensemen in the lineup, including a top-pairing of Esa Lindell and Julius Honka.

Texas was rotating pairs slightly in practice, so Matt Mangene or Jesse Blacker could also be in the lineup.

It’ll also be interesting to see who the back-up goalie is. John Muse is going to start and play at least two periods, but Philippe Desrosiers or Maxime Lagace could play the third period as they continue their battle for the back-up role on opening night.

Lines (based on yesterday’s practice. Team did not have a morning skate with a 3 p.m. start.)

Jason Dickinson-Travis Morin-Brandon Ranford
Devin Shore-Justin Dowling-Remi Elie
Derek Hulak-Radek Faksa-Branden Troock
Cory Kane-Gemel Smith-Matej Stransky

Esa Lindell-Julius Honka
Ludwig Bystrom-Stephen Johns
Mattias Backman-Jesse Blacker OR Matt Mangene

John Muse
Maxime Lagace OR Philippe Desrosiers

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