NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Thursday, January 8th (All times eastern)
Dallas Stars (17-16-5) at Detroit Red Wings (27-7-5), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The powerful Detroit Red Wings will aim for their fifth consecutive victory when they welcome the Dallas Stars for tonight's matchup at Joe Louis Arena.
The Red Wings have won four in a row and can match their longest winning streak of the year with another victory tonight. Detroit, which leads the Central Division with 59 points, is also aiming for its sixth straight home win.
Ty Conklin used 23 saves to record his fourth shutout of the season, as the Red Wings blanked the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets, 3-0, on Tuesday night.
Conklin is 14-5-1 this season, but head coach Mike Babcock is expected to go with Chris Osgood in goal tonight. Osgood has played in 41 career games against the Stars and is an impressive 27-10 with three ties in those outings.
Pavel Datsyuk tallied a goal and two assists for the Red Wings, while Marian Hossa and Henrik Zetterberg also scored in the win.
Datsyuk has recorded a point in 10 of his last 11 games and has 20 points (9 goals, 11 assists) over that stretch. He is leading the Red Wings with 45 points this season.
Both Datsyuk and Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom were named as reserves to the Western Conference All-Star team on Wednesday.
Detroit is 14-3-2 as the host this year and is playing the middle portion of a three-game homestand tonight. The Red Wings will complete the residency this Saturday against Buffalo.
The Stars have won two of their last three games and are coming off Sunday's dramatic win in Vancouver. Dallas winger James Neal continued an impressive rookie campaign by netting the game-winning shootout goal in what was otherwise a goaltending clinic, as the Stars got by Vancouver, 3-2, at General Motors Place.
Neal set up Mike Modano's 13th goal of the season late in the first while Modano assisted on Mike Ribeiro's second-period goal that eventually forced overtime for the Stars.
Marty Turco was superb in stopping 33-of-35 shots, including an 11-save third period.
This evening's test marks the third stop on a four-game road trip for the Stars, who are just 8-10-2 as the guest this season. Dallas will make a stop in Phoenix on Saturday before returning to Texas for a three-game homestand.
Dallas earned a 3-1 home win over the Red Wings in the first of four meetings between the clubs on December 12, and the Stars have taken two of the last three encounters with Detroit. However, the Wings have still come out on top in three of five and seven of the last 10 matchups. The Stars have also dropped two straight and four of five in the Motor City.
01/08 10:56:00 ET