Auld to start in goal vs. Panthers

FRISCO, Texas -- Forwards Mike Modano (cracked rib) and Jere Lehtinen (intercostal muscle) will not play for the Dallas Stars against the Florida Panthers on Friday night.

Both players were on the ice for morning skate but aren't quite ready to return, Stars coach Marc Crawford said. Mark Fistric could play forward against the Panthers, though the Stars might go with seven defensemen.

Crawford, who will coach his 1,000th game Friday, said Modano and Lehtinen are possibilities for Saturday's game in Nashville. If not, Wednesday's home game vs. Calgary would be the next target date.

Backup goalie Alex Auld will start Friday. Crawford said he wanted Auld to play at home, something he hasn't done yet this season.

"I think it's important we don't just play Alex on the road," Crawford said. "It's nice to hear some cheers when you do something good."

Richard Durrett covers the Stars for ESPNDallas.com. E-mail richard.durrett@espn3.com.