Dallas Stars defenseman Jamie Oleksiak will miss at least a couple weeks with hand injury, according to Stars coach Lindy Ruff.
Oleksiak suffered the injury in a 2-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday and didn’t return after taking one shift in the second period.
With Oleksiak out Stephen Johns will have an opportunity to get back in the lineup for the first time since Jan. 4. It will also be his second game after he sustained a lower-body injury against the St. Louis Blues on Dec. 20.
Johns recent benching came after he took a delay of game penalty against St. Louis. Ruff has harped on that penalty a couple times, stating that Johns needs to use his feet more in his game.
“(Just) trying to stay in the lineup,” Johns said. “In my shoes it’s more of a defensive game. I’ve got to stay on the right side of guys and do what I get paid to do and that’s be physical and shut those guys down.”
With Oleksiak on injured reserve the Stars now have seven defenseman on the NHL roster. Patrik Nemeth is on the official roster, but is currently in the middle of an AHL conditioning stint with the Texas Stars.
Stars captain Jamie Benn will be back in the Stars lineup after missing four games with a foot injury.
“I felt good the last couple days skating on my own,” Benn said on Thursday morning. “It was tough. It was different, I haven’t missed a game for a while. So I learned a thing or two watching from up top.”
Benn has a four-game point streak before the injury and is second on the team with 34 points in 38 games.
Stars projected lineup
Jamie Benn — Jason Spezza — Tyler Seguin
Roussel — Cody Eakin — Patrick Eaves
Jiri Hudler — Radek Faksa — Patrick Sharp
Lauri Korpikoski — Devin Shore — Brett Ritchie
Esa Lindell — John Klingberg
Johnny Oduya — Stephen Johns
Dan Hamhuis — Jordie Benn
Scratched: Curtis McKenzie, Adam Cracknell
AHL conditioning stint: Patrik Nemeth
Injured: Mattias Janmark (knee), Ales Hemsky (hip), Jamie Oleksiak (hand)