NHL Game Summary - Atlanta at Dallas
(Thursday, January 8th)
Final Score: Dallas 2, Atlanta 1
Dallas, TX (Sports Network) - Jason Arnott recorded the primary assists on both Dallas goals, as the Stars took a two-goal lead and hung on for a 2-1 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers at American Airlines Center.
Marty Turco backed up NHL fans, who earlier in the day selected him to his first-ever All-Star game start, by stopping 15 of the 16 shots he faced in the win. Steve Ott and Scott Young scored the goals for Dallas, which won for the first time in six games (1-1-4).
Ronald Petrovicky scored the lone goal for the Thrashers, who have lost five in a row. Pasi Nurminen stopped 24-of-26 shots in the contest. Atlanta remained pointless in eight all-time meetings against the Stars (0-8-0).
Four All-Star game starters were represented in the contest, as Turco, right wing Bill Guerin and center Mike Modano of Dallas were chosen by the fans to represent the Western Conference in the annual exhibition. Modano sat out the game due to injury.
Meanwhile, Atlanta's Ilya Kovalchuk led all vote-getters in either conference with 145,380 when fan balloting totals were released on Thursday. Kovalchuk recorded an assist on Petrovicky's goal.
Ott got the Stars on the board first with a goal just 1:49 into the contest. Arnott worked the puck at the left side of the net, and muscled it underneath the netminder. The puck slid over toward the far post, where Ott was on the spot to hammer it home for his second tally of the season.
After a scoreless second period, Dallas took a 2-0 lead on Young's fourth goal of the season. Arnott was moving from the neutral zone past the blue line with the puck, and backhanded a saucer pass from the left boards to Young zipping down the middle. Young snapped a quick shot past Nurminen, high and to the glove side, for the tally with 13:28 to play.
It was the second goal for Young in as many nights.
Atlanta made it close with a goal with 2:36 remaining. Jean-Pierre Vigier came into the offensive zone and dropped the puck to Kovalchuk at the top of the left faceoff circle. Kovalchuk fired on net and the rebound popped up in front to Petrovicky, who took two whacks at the puck in the air before jamming it through Turco's legs.
However, Atlanta wouldn't get a viable scoring chance the rest of the way.
The NHL All-Star Game will be held on February 8 in St. Paul, Minnesota. The Stars moved from Minnesota to Texas following the 1992-93 season...The All- Star selection was the best news Modano has received in some time. He missed this contest, as well as the previous two, with a groin injury, and doesn't expect to skate again until Monday. He has just eight goals and 17 assists through 40 games, with a career-worst minus-19 rating...Atlanta is 7-10-1-2 on the road and lost for the first time against the Pacific Division (3-1-1)...Dallas is 4-1 against the Southeast Division...The Stars are 14-3-2-0 when scoring first and have won 53 straight when leading after two period.
01/09 00:08:42 ET