Dallas Stars: Shane Doan

Teams changed positions in the Western Conference on Thursday night, but the situation remains the same. It’s tight. Five teams are separated by two points. It’s three points separating six teams.

With their loss to the Canucks on Thursday night, the Stars dropped from third place in the West to eighth. Three losses –- all of them in regulation –- over the last four games will bite you in a tight race. When you get no points in three of four games, you are eventually going to slip. But the Stars are only one point out of the Pacific Division lead. Of course, they are only two points ahead of 11th place Calgary, the team Dallas plays against in its next two games. More on that in a bit.

The Kings, who made it six straight wins with a 1-0 shootout victory over St. Louis, are now sitting on top of the Pacific Division and in the third spot in the West. It sounds good, but their grip on that is just as precarious as when the Stars started the day Thursday. They Kings have a one-point lead on the 10th place Sharks. No reason to celebrate just yet, but the Kings are playing some pretty good hockey right now.

The Coyotes also passed the Stars and now sit in seventh place in the West. Playing their first game without captain Shane Doan, who is serving a three-game suspension for elbowing Stars forward Jamie Benn, the Coyotes beat Colorado 3-2. The Coyotes have won only four of their last eight games, but they have points in seven of eight (4-1-3). Avoiding those regulation losses and picking up points has helped keep the Coyotes right in the thick of things.

This was a big loss for Colorado, which dropped into ninth place. The Avalanche are tied with the Stars at 85 points and are just one point behind the Coyotes and Kings, but have played two more games than Dallas and Los Angeles and one more than Phoenix.

San Jose snapped a two-game losing streak with a 2-1 win over Boston. The Sharks are just one point out of the division lead and one point behind the Stars for eighth place. Just when it looks like the Sharks are reeling a bit, they come up with a big win.

Calgary lost 2-1 in a shootout at Minnesota. It left the Flames in eleventh place, two points out of a playoff spot. The Flames haven’t won in four games, but they have picked up one point in each of their last three losses. That’s helped them hang in the race. This home-and-home coming up with the Stars is basically do or die for them. They need to win these games and gain ground or their chances really start to fade. It’s going to be huge for the Stars as well, because if they let Calgary gain ground on them then chances are they will lose some ground to the teams they are now chasing.

No games in the West Friday night, so enjoy an evening of no scoreboard watching.

DALLAS -- Dallas Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said right after Tuesday’s game that he thought Shane Doan’s hit on Jamie Benn was a “suspendable offense.” Wednesday night, the league suspended Doan three games for elbowing Benn.

This morning, Gulutzan was asked for his reaction to the suspension.

“I think the league has done a good job -- where it’s us or not -- of certainly making it clear what is a suspension and what is not,” Gulutzan said. “We just had a meeting about three weeks ago with Shanny (NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan) and that’s what it was about, the rules and the clarity. From what they spelled out, I said it was a suspension. You can’t target the head on a hit, and that’s what it was.”

As for the three games, Gulutzan quipped he wouldn’t have minded more games since the Stars are battling the Coyotes for the Pacific Division title and a playoff spot, but he said the length of the suspension was reasonable.

“Of course we’d like more, we’re fighting with Phoenix and he’s a real good player. He’s a pretty honest guy and he’s been in the league a long time,” Gulutzan said. “I think three is probably the way to go.”

Stars-Canucks Preview

March, 21, 2012
Vancouver Canucks at Dallas Stars
Thursday March 22
7:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sports Southwest
Radio: KTCK-1310 (AM)

About the Stars

The Stars (40-28-5) are coming off a 4-3 shootout win over Phoenix Tuesday that kept them sitting on top of the Pacific Division and in third place in the Western Conference. The Stars weren’t entirely pleased with the effort. They gave up a 3-1 lead in the third period and gave one point to a team chasing them in the standings.

“I think we did good things but we’ve got to find ways to keep that two-goal lead and not give those guys a chance to get back into the game,” said Stars forward Michael Ryder, who scored two goals. “We made a couple mistakes, a couple turnovers that ended up in our net. We came here for two points and we got that but they got one.”

The Stars have won both games against Vancouver this season – one in overtime and one in regulation, but they aren’t taking in comfort in those two previous contests.

“Obviously one of the elite teams in the league, so we are going to have to be sharp and a lot cleaner than we were against Phoenix,” said Stars coach Glen Gulutzan. “For Phoenix not being known as a heavy offensive team, they certainly capitalized on what we gave them. If we do the same to Vancouver, they’ll do the same thing.”

Kari Lehtonen, who made 27 saves Tuesday and was 3-3 in the shootout, is expected to start in goal for Dallas.

Stars forward Jamie Benn, who took an elbow in the head from Shane Doan during Tuesday’s game and another hard hit in overtime, said he was fine on Wednesday and will play in Thursday’s game. Doan was suspended three games by the NHL Wednesday for the hit on Benn.

Injuries: D Mark Fistric (abdominal strain) is out.

About the Canucks

The Canucks (43-22-8) lost 2-1 in overtime at Chicago Wednesday night. The Canucks scored 27 seconds into the game, but Chicago tied it in the second and Andrew’s Shaw goal at 2:42 of overtime won it.

It was the Canucks’ fourth loss in the last five games (1-3-1).

The Canucks lost more than a game. They lost forward Daniel Sedin in the first period after he took an elbow to the head from Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith, who received a minor penalty for elbowing.

“Deliberate, principal point of contact, everything you are trying to take out of the game,” Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said when asked about Keith’s hit. “I expected a major (penalty) and got a minor.”

As for the status of Sedin, Vigneault said the team would know more on Thursday.

“We’ll re-evaluate him tomorrow,” Vigneault said. “He was taken out of the game obviously. Everybody saw the headshot there. We’ll re-evaluate tomorrow and I’ll know more from there.”

Despite the loss, the Canucks felt they had played their best game in a while. They are 3-5-3 over their last 11 games.

“This was by far our best team game in a lot of weeks,” Canucks center Henrik Sedin said. “We won games before, but we haven’t played the way we wanted to. Tonight, everyone showed up.”

Injuries: D Keith Ballard (concussion), C Andrew Ebbett (collarbone) and C Aaron Volpatti (shoulder) are out.

Series notes

*This is the third of four meetings between the two teams.

*Dallas is 2-0-0 in the season series.

*The Canucks are 0-1-1 in the series.

*February 26, at Dallas: Stars 3, Canucks 2 (OT)
March 6, at Vancouver: Stars 5, Canucks 2

Statistical tidbits

*The Stars are 15-4-3 since the All-Star break.

*The Canucks are 13-6-5 since the All-Star break.

*The Canucks have scored on the power play in three of their last 14 games.

*The Stars have allowed a power play goal in three of their last 14 games.

*Dallas is 12-3-0 versus the Northwest Division this season, including 7-1-0 at American Airlines Center.

*Vancouver is 7-5-4 versus the Pacific Division.

*Stars forwards Loui Eriksson, Mike Ribeiro and Michael Ryder have combined for 12 points in the season series against Vancouver this year (6 goals, 6 assists).

Shane Doan statement on suspension

March, 21, 2012
The Phoenix Coyotes released a statement tonight from Shane Doan on his three-game suspension for elbowing Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn in Tuesday's game at American Airlines Center.
“I accept the NHL’s decision and ruling" Doan said. "I am thankful that Jamie Benn was not hurt on the play. I recognize how bad it looked but there was no intent to injure him. Jamie Benn is a class act and I appreciate how he handled everything. I apologize to the NHL, my teammates and our fans for missing the next three games as we continue to fight for a playoff spot.”
The NHL has suspended Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan three games for elbowing Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn in Tuesday night’s 4-3 shootout win by the Stars.

“While we accept Doan’s assertion that the action was not intentional, we feel that Doan’s extended elbow in that situation was reckless and made him responsible for the dangerous head contact that resulted,” the NHL’s Brendan Shanahan said in announcing the suspension. “It is important to note that Doan is a repeat offender, having been suspended for three games 17 months ago for an illegal check to the head. We have also taken into consideration that Doan was fined just five days ago for a dangerous boarding incident.”

The hit took place in the second period, just after the Stars had taken a 2-1 lead in the game on a power play goal by Michael Ryder. After Benn chipped the puck past Doan in the Dallas zone, Doan stuck out his elbow and caught Benn in the head.

“He got me pretty good,” Benn said Wednesday morning.

Benn, who took two big hits in the game including the elbow from Doan, said he was OK and would play Thursday against the Canucks.

"Feeling fine, normal," Benn said.

The Dallas forward was asked if he was disappointed with the hit, and took the diplomatic route.

"No, it's hockey. It's so fast out there, things happen," Benn said. "I'll let the league deal with it.

“Hockey is a rough sport. Bodies are flying, elbows are flying. Guys are trying to crack down on it now. Players are doing a lot better at taking responsibility for their hits. It was just a play that happened fast and it is what it is.”

Benn was also nailed hard by Phoenix forward Antoine Vermette in overtime and left the game briefly. He returned to take part in the shootout. Benn admitted he might have been a target for the Coyotes on Tuesday night.

“Everyone is looking to get into the playoffs and they are keying on guys to shut them down,” he said. “I had an ‘X’ on my back last night, but I’ll take that if they are going to leave our top line alone. They stepped up and played a good game.”

Doan, who will forfeit $166,463.40 in salary, will be eligible to return for the March 29 game versus the San Jose Sharks.

Shanahan video explanation

Here's the video explanation of the Shane Doan suspension from the NHL's Brendan Shanahan.

FRISCO -- Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn said he is feeling fine after taking a couple of hard hits in Tuesday night's 4-3 shootout win over Phoenix at American Airlines Center.

"Feeling fine, normal," Benn said.

The first hit came when Phoenix captain Shane Doan caught in him in the head with an elbow. Doan, who received an elbowing minor during the game for the hit, faces possible suspension. He has a disciplinary hearing with the league later this afternoon. Benn was asked if he was disappointed with Doan's hit.

"No, it's hockey. It's so fast out there, things happen," Benn said. "I'll let the league deal with it."

Benn also was shaken up in overtime when he was hit hard into the boards by Phoenix's Antoine Vermette. Benn received some assistance in the tunnel leading to the locker room, but returned in time for the shootout.

"It was a tough play. I was tripped into the boards and slid in there," Benn said. "It was a little bit of a scramble. I fell into the boards pretty hard, got up and toe-picked (fell donw) and skated off."

Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said Benn will be fine for Thursday's game against Vancouver.

Defenseman Mark Fistric is out for Thurday's game with abdominal strain. He left the game in the second period and did not return.

"Fisty is out. He's a got a little ab strain. He's going to be a day-to-day guy. He's a little sore today," Gulutzan said. "Pards (Adam Pardy) will come in tomorrow."

The Stars held an optional skate today. Goalies Kari Lehtonen and Richard Bachman were both on the ice along with Pardy, Philip Larsen, Toby Petersen, Ryan Garbutt, Tomas Vincour and Jordie Benn.
Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan has a disciplinary hearing this afternoon with the NHL's Department of Player Safety for his hit on Stars forward Jamie Benn in Tuesday night's game at American Airlines Center.

Doan hit Benn in the head with an elbow during the second period of the game, a 4-3 shootout victory for Dallas, and received a minor for elbowing. Stars coach Glen Gulutzan called the hit a "suspendable offense."

Benn was shaken up on the play, but returned to game later in the period.
DALLAS -- Stars coach Glen Gulutzan believes Phoenix captain Shane Doan could be looking at a suspension for a hit on Dallas forward Jamie Benn in Tuesday’s 4-3 Dallas shootout win American Airlines Center.

Doan caught Benn with an elbow in the second period of the game, prompting a major scrum that saw a total of 64 penalty minutes handed out. Doan, picked up a fighting major along with Dallas captain Brenden Morrow, was given an elbowing minor for the hit on Benn.

“I think it is a suspendable offense. He targeted the head with his elbow,” said Gulutzan. “The league will look at it for sure and decide. But it’s deliberate.”

Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said after the game he hadn’t looked at the hit yet, but did express concern about losing Doan to a possible suspension.

“I haven’t looked at it yet but we’ll see how that goes,” Tippett said. “We’re lacking a few bodies right now. That would be one we couldn’t miss but we’ll see how that turns out.”

Benn was shaken up on the hit, but did return to the game. He was shaken up another hit in overtime, but returned to take part in the shootout.

Here’s video of Doan’s hit on Benn:

DALLAS -- The Dallas Stars got an important two points Tuesday night, but they weren’t thrilled with how they got them. The Stars blew a 3-1 lead in the third period before beating the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3 in a shootout at American Airlines Center.

“I think we did good things but we’ve got to find ways to keep that two-goal lead and not give those guys a chance to get back into the game,” said Stars forward Michael Ryder, who scored two goals and had one assist. “We made a couple mistakes, a couple turnovers that ended up in our net. We came here for two points and we got that, but they got one.”

The win kept the Stars, who snapped a two-game losing streak, in first place in the Pacific Division and third in the Western Conference. The Stars are one point ahead of both Los Angeles and Phoenix in the division and they are now three points ahead of San Jose.

The Stars got a big game from their top line of Loui Eriksson, Mike Ribeiro and Ryder, who scored all three goals for Dallas. Ribeiro also scored the lone goal of the shootout.

“We’ve been working well lately for the past while and we’re reading off each other and working hard and trying to do the right things and it seems to be going in for us,” said Ryder.

Kari Lehtonen was superb in goal, making 27 saves in regulation and overtime and stopping all three shooters in the shootout.

“He gave us the points,” Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said of Lehtonen’s performance.

The Stars struck first in the game, getting a goal from Eriksson off the rush just 2:12 into the game. The Coyotes answered a little more than three minutes later on a goal by Lauri Korpikoski.

The Stars took a 2-1 lead on a power play goal by Ryder at the 5:26 mark and less than 30 seconds later there was a major scrum after Phoenix captain Shane Doan caught Stars forward Jamie Benn in the head with an elbow. A total of 64 penalty minutes were handed out, including fighting majors to Doan and Stars captain Brenden Morrow.

Gulutzan did not like Doan’s hit on Benn.

“I think it is a suspendable offense. He targeted the head with his elbow,” Gulutzan said. “The league will look at it for sure and decide. But it's deliberate."

Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said he hadn’t seen a replay of the play yet.

“I haven’t looked at it yet but we’ll see how that goes,” Tippett said.

The Stars were able to extend their lead later in the period when Ryder got to a puck in the crease and put it past Coyotes goalie Mike Smith to make it a 3-1 game.

But the Coyotes came back in the third, getting a shorthanded tally from defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson and then a power play goal by Ray Whitney to tie the game.

“We shot ourselves in the foot,” said Gulutzan. “We couldn’t get it through our heads that turning the puck over is dangerous.”

Lehtonen came up with big saves down the stretch and in overtime, including a great pad save on Ekman-Larsson in the extra period.

“Yeah, that’s a really good save,” said Ekman-Larsson. “I think I hit the pad there, so yeah, almost.”

In the shootout, Lehtonen stopped Mikkel Boedker, Whitney and Doan.

“I was pretty comfortable there,” Lehtonen said. “We look at lots of tape and have a little clue of what they are doing. I was happy it worked out that way.”

Ribeiro scored the lone goal for the Stars, eluding an aggressive move by Smith and then slipping the puck into the net.

“I didn’t expect [Smith] to come out,” Ribeiro said. “I expected him maybe to poke check, but I guess he was nervous seeing what I was doing, but we shouldn’t have even been there. It should have been over way before that”


*The Stars lost defenseman Mark Fistric to a pulled muscle in the second period. He did not return to the game.

*Jamie Benn was banged up in overtime, going into the corner boards hard during a collision with Phoenix forward Antoine Vermette. Benn left the game, but then returned for the shootout. He appeared to be fine after the game.

*Adam Pardy, Ryan Garbutt, Tomas Vincour, Toby Petersen and Jordie Benn were healthy scratches for the Dallas Stars.

*The Coyotes were without RW Radim Vrbata (illness) and LW Taylor Pyatt (upper body) for Tuesday’s game.

*Tuesday’s attendance was 17,012.

Stars-Coyotes Preview

March, 19, 2012
Phoenix Coyotes at Dallas Stars
Tuesday, March 20
7:00 p.m.
TV: NBC Sports Network
Radio: KTCK-1310 (AM)

About the Stars

The Stars (39-28-5) are coming off a 4-1 loss to Chicago on Friday. It was the second straight loss for the Stars following a six-game winning streak and 11-game points streak. Chicago scored two goals in the first 1:42 of the game to take the early lead and then two goals early in the third period to put the game away.

“We put ourselves in a hole there, and you never want to do that against a good team like Chicago,” Benn said. “We did a better job in the second, but had another bad start in the third that crushed us. We shied away from our game a bit. We need to play the simple game, get pucks deep, and win the blue lines. We can’t shoot ourselves in the foot with bad starts.”

The Stars head into Tuesday’s game in a four-way battle San Jose, Phoenix and Los Angeles for the Pacific Division title. They are tied with the Coyotes at 83 points and have one game in hand.

“We’ve just got worry about our games and what we can control,” said Stars captain Brenden Morrow. “That’s Phoenix on Tuesday.”

Kari Lehtonen is scheduled to start in goal for the Stars on Tuesday.

Injuries: RW Radek Dvorak (ankle) and D Sheldon Souray (lower body) are probable.

About the Coyotes

The Coyotes (36-26-11) are coming off a 3-2 shootout win in Edmonton on Sunday. The Coyotes overcame a 2-0 deficit, scoring two goals in the third period to force overtime and then won the game in the shootout.

“You look at the way the game went and we weren't playing the way we needed to be," Coyotes captain Shane Doan said. “They played really, well but we were just able to find a way. We're feeling a bit fortunate right now.”

Coyotes coach Dave Tippett earned his 400th career victory in Sunday’s game.

“401 on Tuesday would work for me,” Tippett said.

The Coyotes are 2-1-0 on their current road trip, which concludes Tuesday in Dallas.

Injuries: RW Radim Vrbata (undisclosed) and LW Taylor Pyatt (undisclosed) are questionable. D Adrian Aucoin (lower body) is day-to-day. C Kyle Chipchura (wrist) is out.

Series notes

*This is the sixth and final meeting between the two teams.

*The Stars are 2-2-1 in the season series.

*The Coyotes are 3-0-2 in the season series.

*October 10, at Dallas: Stars 2, Coyotes 1 (SO)
*October 25, at Phoenix: Star3, Coyotes 2 (OT)
*November 26, at Phoenix: Coyotes 3, Stars 0
*February 7, at Dallas: Coyotes 4, Stars 1
*February 18, at Phoenix: Coyotes 2, Stars 1 (OT)

Statistical tidbits

*The Stars have six goals over their last four games.

*The Stars haven’t had a power play chance in the last two games and are 1-9 on the power play over the last five games.

*The Coyotes have the 30th ranked power play in the league and are 2-20 on the PP over their last eight games.

*The Stars are 40-42 (95.2%) on the penalty kill over the last 13 games.

*The Coyotes are 26-28 (92.9%) on the penalty kill over the last nine games.

*Stars forward Jamie Benn has four goals in the last six games.

*Coyotes forward Ray Whitney is on a four-game points streak (one goal, five assists).

Here are some quotes from new Dallas Stars owner Tom Gaglardi on a variety of topics, including his philosophy on spending, being involved in personnel decisions, bringing Mike Modano into the organization and his love of the Dallas Cowboys.

On his optimism about where the Stars are as he takes over

“The great thing about Dallas is this isn’t a rebuild. We’ve got fabulous pieces in place here. Some of our best great players are young. We’ve got so much flexibility going forward with where we sit in payroll. I know that I’ve talked with enough people around the NHL who have said that most teams would love to be in our position with where we sit today.”

On his philosophy on spending money on players

“I learned in the Western Hockey League that they only way you win is you build from within. You build, draft, develop and coach. That’s the philosophy I come with. I think there have been enough cases around the NHL to know that you cannot buy a winner, so I believe in the old fashioned way of building teams. Having said that, we’re here to win. This isn’t about anything other than becoming a great team and pursuing championships. If Joe (Nieuwendyk) and his staff think that is something we can do in terms of stepping up and doing more in that regard, then we’re going to do it.”

On being involved in personnel decisions

“If any owner tells you he doesn’t want to be involved in a conversation about who your personnel are, I think they are lying to you. I am not going to make those decisions. I hope that I have an opportunity to have a seat at the table when we discuss people and I’ll have a chance to impart what I know of them. In some cases I know that we have players in the organization that were drafted that I know very well. I watched them play four years of junior in the Western Hockey League. I just want to have a say, and I know I’ll get that. At the end of the day it’s Joe’s team and Joe is going to make those decisions. That’s what general managers do and that’s what I’ll expect him to do.”

On bringing former Dallas Star Mike Modano into the organization

“The guy is the most important player I think to ever have worn a Stars jersey. In my opinion, he’s the best American-born hockey player to ever play in the NHL. I’ve gotten to know Mike in the last little while and enjoyed my time with him. I’ve expressed an interest that I’d like to have him involved in some capacity with the Dallas Stars and Mike has expressed the same thing to me, and more recently to Jim Lites. Those are discussions I expect to have with Mike to figure out what he wants to do and where he might be able to fit. It’s my intention to include Mike Modano with the Dallas Stars organization.”

On his experience as owner of the Kamloops Blazers of the Western Hockey League

“I’ve learned so much the last four years. I’m fortunate to be partnered with four pretty successful NHL players (Shane Doan, Jarome Iginla, Mark Recchi and Darryl Sydor). I spent plenty of time with those guys, getting to know them, how they’re wired and what made them what they are. They attribute so much of what they are to what they experienced in Kamloops because they all four played for the Blazers and they’ve gone on to be fantastic NHLers. I’ve learned so much, and I come here with some knowledge. I’ve got lots to learn, I’m a good listener and I drive people nuts asking questions. That’s not going to end anytime soon.”

On being a Dallas Cowboys fan

“Absolute fanatic. If you go to my closet at home, most of my casual clothes – t-shirts and sweats I wear around the house – are Dallas Cowboys stuff. I’ve been crazy for the team ever since I can remember. I got that from my dad. He went to college here and brought the Cowboy love back and I was raised in it.”

Just when it looked the like the Phoenix Coyotes were about to get at least one point thanks to a late rally Tuesday night, the Dallas Stars left them with nothing. Jamie Benn’s power play goal with 4.8 seconds remaining gave the Stars 3-2 victory to open a key four-game road trip.

“It was a pretty crazy finish,” said Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen.

“Crazy last few minutes, going through all the emotions there,” said Stars forward Jamie Langenbrunner. “It was a great play by Benner to bury the winner with no time left.”

“It's an awful way to lose a game,” said Phoenix captain Shane Doan.

After Phoenix had scored goals with 3:39 and 37.7 seconds remaining to tie the game at 2-2, the Stars got a power play chance when Mike Ribeiro drew a hooking call on Radim Vrbata with just 13 seconds remaining. And the Stars seized the opportunity.

The Stars went with four forwards, adding Benn to the usual set of top forwards on the top power play unit.

"We put Jamie Benn out there, a good scorer for us," said Stars coach Marc Crawford. "We were trying to find a way to end it."

Off the offensive zone faceoff, Brenden Morrow won a puck battle along the boards, Mike Ribeiro got the puck to Loui Eriksson and Eriksson set up Benn, who scored from off a wrist shot from about 25 feet.

“I was thinking we better score here. It was a big goal,” said Benn. “It was a great play by Brenden to win that battle in the corner and for Loui to make a great pass I've got give them all the credit for setting me up.”

A big goal and a big two points as well for the Stars, who pulled to within two points of the fourth place Coyotes and within one point of fifth place Calgary, and the Stars have played two fewer games than both teams.

“It’s huge to win. It’s huge to win in regulation,” said Crawford. “What it does is it takes away that valuable point they could have had. For us, our goal was to get two points and the second goal was to get it without giving them anything.”

The Stars didn’t give the Coyotes much of anything for most of the game thanks to solid defensive play and stellar goaltending from Lehtonen, who ended the night with 25 saves.

The Stars capitalized on a Phoenix turnover late in the first period to take a 1-0 lead. After Phoenix defenseman Michal Rozsival lost the puck in his own end, Toby Petersen set up Tom Wandell, who roofed a shot from the left boards with 1:34 left in the period.

The Stars extended the lead with 7:13 left in the game when Steve Ott put a shot on net from the right boards and it deflected into the net off the skate of Jamie Langenbrunner.

But the Coyotes bounced with late goals from Rostislav Klesla and Ray Whitney and the game appeared to be heading to overtime before the late heroics by the Stars’ power play, which had been effective in its previous chances and finally found the net on its final and most important opportunity.

“Our power play was effective most of the night and it finally cashed in at the end,” said Crawford. “You talk about that all the time, making your next power play or penalty kill the important one and that was huge.”

The Coyotes saw their winless streak hit four games (0-3-1). Phoenix coach Dave Tippett was not happy with his team taking a late penalty to put Dallas on the power play.

“I think we've got to look at it right in the teeth and say, 'What the hell is going on?' That's two games we've lost this week because of penalties,” Tippett said. “At some point we've got to get it. We'll look at it straight in the face and take the challenge. We better or it's not a good thing."

“You find ways to win and taking penalties is finding ways to lose.”

The Stars have found a way to win three straight games, and appear to be getting back on track as the NHL stretch drive shifts into high gear.

Stars fall 1-0 to Coyotes

December, 26, 2010

The Dallas Stars’ 13-game points streak at home came to an end Sunday as they fell 1-0 to the Phoenix Coyotes at American Airlines Center.

Kyle Turris scored the only goal of the game, knocking home a rebound at 10:46 of the second period. Jason LaBarbera stopped 30 shots to get the shutout for Phoenix. Kari Lehtonen stopped 25 of 26 shots for Dallas.

First period

The Dallas Stars and Phoenix Coyotes are scoreless after one period of play at American Airlines Center.

The Stars outshot the Coyotes 8-7 in the period even though Phoenix had the only two power play chances of the period. Phoenix got back-to-back power play chances late in the period, but the Stars were able to kill them off.

The Stars were without D Nicklas Grossman and C Tom Wandell, who both sat out the game with illness.

*Stars D Nicklas Grossman and C Tom Wandell were both for the game due to illness.

*The Stars won 7 of 19 faceoffs in the period.

*Stars forward Krys Barch and Paul Bissonnette picked up fighting majors in the period. Barch went to the locker room after the scrap for repairs.

Second period

The Stars had a good chance early in the period, but Phoenix goalie Jason LaBarbera made a pad save after Mike Ribeiro made a slick move to set up a shot by Jamie Benn.

Stars forward Loui Eriksson was awarded a penalty shot with 13:12 left in the second after he was hooked by Phoenix defenseman Ed Jovanovski on a breakaway. Eriksson’s shot was denied by LaBarbera, who made a blocker save.

The Coyotes opened the scoring with 9:14 left in the second when Shane Doan put a shot on net off the rush and Kyle Turris got the rebound and slipped it around Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen.

Stars forward Brian Sutherby took a double minor for high sticking late in the period. Phoenix appeared to score 11 seconds into it, but the goal was waved off after a review because Martin Hanzal deflected the puck into the net with a high stick.

Lehtonen made a big save on Ray Whitney with just over a minute left in the 4:00 power play and the Stars were able to kill off the rest of it to keep it a 1-0 game.

Third period

Lehtonen made another big save early in the third to keep it a 1-0 game, stopping Lee Stempniak.

The Stars got their first power play of the game at the 3:28 mark of the third period, but could generate nothing with it.

LaBarbera had a couple of big stops later in the period, stopping Brenden Morrow from point blank range and Mike Ribeiro from the right circle.

Lehtonen came up with another big stop on Ray Whitney from close range with just under 11 minutes left in the game.

The Stars got their second power play chance of the game midway through the third, but couldn’t cash in.Co

Stars fall 5-2 to Coyotes

December, 11, 2010
The Dallas Stars lost third time in their last four games (1-2-1) and for the third straight time on the road (0-2-1), falling 5-2 at Phoenix Saturday night. The Stars fell behind 2-0 early in the game and could never catch up. The Stars missed on their first six power play chances in the game and ended up 1-7 on the night. They are 3-49 on the power play in road games this season. James Neal and Loui Eriksson scored for Dallas. Andrew Raycroft started for the Stars, stopped 25 of 30 shots and was pulled midway through the third period. Richard Bachman, who made his NHL debut, played the final 9:35 and stopped all four shots he faced.

First period

The Coyotes scored a pair of goals 1:08 apart to take an early 2-0 lead. Radim Vrbata won a puck battle behind the Dallas net and one-handed the puck to Ray Whitney, who scored from close range at the 6:11 mark to open the scoring.

A little more than a minute later a Trevor Daley pass got picked off in the neutral zone and Shane Doan scored from the slot on a three-on-two break to make it a 2-0 game at the 7:19 mark.

The Stars had a chance to cut into Phoenix’s lead with a couple of power play chances but Coyotes goalie Ilya Bryzgalov was sharp and made several good stops, including two on Mike Ribeiro.

After Ribeiro was called for roughing with 48 seconds left in the period, Phoenix went on its first power play and cashed in to make it 3-0. Doan scored off the rebound of a Whitney shot for his second goal of the period.

Some notes after one period.
  • The Coyotes outshot the Stars 18-15 in the period.
  • The Stars were 0-2 on the power play and the Coyotes were 1-1.
  • Phoenix won 19 of 28 faceoffs in the period.
  • The Stars went with the same lineup as Friday.
Second period

The Stars scored 3:11 into the second to make it a 3-1 game. James Neal took a drop pass from Tom Wandell and beat Ilya Bryzgalov with a shot from the top of the left circle.

Stars goalie Andrew Raycroft kept it a 3-1 game with a great pad save on Martin Hanzal with Phoenix on its second power play of the game.

The Stars got three more power plays in the period but couldn’t cash in and it remained 3-1 after 40 minutes.

Some notes after two periods.
  • The Stars outshot the Coyotes 11-7 in the second period and owned a 26-25 shots advantage through two periods.
  • The Stars were 0-5 on the power play through two periods and are now 2-47 on the power play in road games.
  • Phoenix was 1-2 on the power play through 40 minutes.
  • The Coyotes won 31 of 52 faceoffs in the first two periods.
Third period

The Stars got a sixth power play early in the third period and they tried to change things up as far as personnel, putting Nicklas Grossman on the point and Brandon Segal up front. It didn’t pay off. Grossman turned over the puck at the Phoenix blue line and Lauri Korpikoski scored on a shorthanded breakaway at the 1:02 mark to make it a 4-1 game.

Phoenix made it a 5-1 game at the 10:25 mark when Keith Yandle finished off a two-on-one rush, ending the night for Andrew Raycroft who gave up five goals on 30 shots. Richard Bachman took over in net for Dallas and made his NHL debut. His first save was a sharp one, stopping Martin Hanzal on a two-on-one. He made a couple of nice saves with Phoenix on a power play as well and ended up stopping all four shots he saw in 9:35 of playing time.

The Stars got one final chance on the power play, their seventh of the game, and scored when Brenden Morrow put the puck off the end boards and Loui Eriksson scored off the rebound to make it a 5-2 final score.

    Some thoughts on 1st period (1-0 Phoenix)

    January, 31, 2010
    PM CT
    DALLAS -- The first period ended with the Coyotes taking a 1-0 advantage. A few thoughts:

    * The Coyotes dominated on shots on goal, holding a 13-5 advantage. The Stars didn't have many scoring chances, something Dave Tippett teams stress with the defensive approach.

    * Dallas had trouble taking care of the puck earlier in the period, making some ill-advised decisions. They played a little better later in the period, but still made some bad passes. Heck, Jamie Benn even hit Brenden Morrow in the face with the puck, drawing blood.

    * Alex Auld made some nice saves as the Coyotes generated some odd-man rushes. There was nothing Auld could do on the goal, which was the result of a nice pass across the slot by Shane Doan to Keith Yandle.

    * Look for the Coyotes to really clamp down and make life difficult for the Stars to get any chances. Dallas needs to get physical in the second period to try to grab some momentum and make more things happen.