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Game Thread: Oilers at Stars: Why is Hemsky Wearing That Jersey?

I got used to Horcoff not wearing Oilers colours, and now Hemsky too. So sad.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Oilers have lost six straight games. Losses five and six were were ugly, the latter being particularly terrible and the worst loss of the season; another season that is a lost cause after just 21 games (really it was lost after about 12 games, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt). And now they get to travel to Texas to play the Stars in Dallas, a city where the team seemingly never wins. Why do the stars always align like this for the Oilers? I can't say for sure, but they probably deserve it.

How To Tune In

Sportsnet West will have all the Oilers action you can handle (for me this isn't much) starting at 6:30PM.

What To Watch For From The Oilers

The top line of Taylor Hall/Ryan Nugent-Hopkins/Jordan Eberle is back together. But what can they really do? Score goals and that's it. Much more importantly than goal scoring is the return of the team's great deterrent, Luke Gazdic. Yes, the Oilers GRITENSITY leader is back in the line-up and, rumour has it, the Stars are considering not even playing the game as a result. That's the kind of impact that just the though of five minutes of Gazdic can have on another team's pshyce.

What To Watch For From The Stars

Ales Hemsky. The Stars might have other players, I don't care. Ales Hemsky. From Defending Big D:

Ales Hemsky will be playing in his first game against his old team

"He's getting more pucks to the net, and I think he's going to get rewarded. I think he understands that to get some action, you've got to get inside," said Ruff on Hemsky. "He's had three assists in the last two games, and that's got to make him feel a little better about his game."

Hemsky has had a rough start to his season on the scoreboard, but has been far from playing poorly. In fact, he's been one of the better forwards for the Stars all season -- he just needs to get some puck luck going again.

"I feel like I'm getting plenty of good chances, and they're just not going in," Hemsky told the Dallas Morning News. "When you do that, you just have to keep working and doing the same things, and you have to believe they will start going in."

Projected Line-Ups

Edmonton Oilers

Taylor Hall - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle
Teddy Purcell - Mark Arcobello - David Perron
Luke Gazdic - Leon Draisaitl - Nail Yakupov
Matt Hendricks - Boyd Gordon - Steve Pinizzotto

Andrew Ference - Jeff Petry
Martin Marincin - Justin Schultz
Nikita Nikitin - Mark Fayne

Viktor Fasth

Dallas Stars

Jamie Benn - Cody Eakin - Tyler Seguin
Antoine Roussel - Jason Spezza - Ales Hemsky
Erik Cole - Shawn Horcoff - Ryan Garbutt
Travis Moen - Vernon Fiddler - Patrick Eaves

Trevor Daley - Jason Demers
Alex Goligoski - John Klingberg
Jyrki Jokipakka - Jamie Oleksiak

Kari Lehtonen

Final Thought