So much for no major changes to the lineup for tonight’s game against Edmonton. Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said today that defenseman Alex Goligoski will be a healthy scratch tonight.
“Alex needs to get back to Alex’s level,” Gulutzan said. “Pretty cut and dried.”
Goligoski, who is making $4.2 million this season, is the Stars’ highest paid defenseman, and his $4.6 million cap his is the second highest on the team this season behind Jamie Benn’s $5.25 million hit. He has three points and a plus-two rating in ten games, but has struggled at times this season.
With Goligoski sitting out tonight, Philip Larsen will be in the lineup after being a healthy scratch the last three games. Gulutzan hopes the time sitting and watching will benefit Larsen.
“I think anyone can learn from watching,” Gulutzan said. “It stings a little bit, but you should come back hungrier. Philip has been fine for us, it’s just that we have a lot of guys battling for a few spots. This is the way it’s going to be for the rest of the year. We need guys to battle for position.”
Larsen could be paired with Jamie Oleksiak. That would leave Brenden Dillon and Stephane Robidas as a pair and Aaron Rome and Trevor Daley as the other.
Kari Lehtonen is in goal for the Stars.
Nugent-Hopkins out for Oilers
On the Edmonton side of things, forward Ryan-Nugent Hopkins is out tonight with an upper body injury. He was injured late in Monday’s game against Vancouver, and is day-t0-day. Devan Dubnyk will start in goal for the Oilers. He’s started all ten games for the Edmonton this season.