NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, January 18th
(All times eastern)
Minnesota Wild (24-22-3) at Dallas Stars (20-17-11), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - After a horrid stretch on the road, the Stars sure were
glad to be back in Dallas over the weekend. Monday is looking even better with
the Wild scheduled to come to town.
Dallas seeks just its third win in its last nine games overall but its 11th in
a row at home over Minnesota in tonight's clash at American Airlines Center.
The Stars returned home on Saturday after a winless three-game road trip and a
span of six losses in seven games, with five of those defeats coming away from
Dallas. The Stars, though, picked up a needed win with a 3-2 shootout triumph
over the Red Wings.
Dallas fell behind by two goals in the first period, but used tallies from
Brad Richards and Loui Eriksson to even things up. Steve Ott then scored a
controversial goal in the sixth round of the shootout, using a backhander to
beat Detroit's Jimmy Howard.
Howard threw the puck out with his glove on his second swipe at Ott's shot. It
was called no goal on the ice, but after a lengthy review, it was determined
that the puck had crossed the line before Howard's second attempt with the
Alex Auld made 26 saves in regulation and overtime before stopping all six
skaters he faced in the shootout.
"We had a call go our way tonight," said Dallas head coach Marc Crawford. "I
thought we worked real hard in our game tonight. Whether it was a break or a
right call, either way it was a positive call for us and we sorely needed it."
Dallas improved to 10-2-2 in its last 14 games at home and 13-5-5 at American
Airlines Center this year. By comparison, the club is 7-12-6 on the road.
The Stars did lose both Brenden Morrow and Jere Lehtinen to upper-body
injuries on Saturday and both skaters are day-to-day.
Dallas and Minnesota both enter this test with 51 points, tied for 10th in the
Western Conference and six back of a playoff spot, but the Wild will need to
shake off some history to break away from the Stars.
Minnesota has lost 10 straight games at Dallas since it last won there on
March 21, 2003. The Wild also have just three wins and a tie in their last 16
contests at Big D.
The Wild have won two straight versus the Stars overall since a five-game
series losing streak, including a 3-2 home win on November 7.
Minnesota has had its struggles as the road team this year, posting just an
8-16-2 mark as the guest compared to its 16-6-1 mark at home. After a perfect
four-game homestand, the Wild have dropped back-to-back contests on the road
and four straight as the guest overall.
The Wild fell behind by four goals in Saturday's 5-1 loss in Phoenix, but made
things interesting during a 4:07 span in the third. Guillaume Latendresse
notched his second goal of the game to get the barrage started on the power
play, Owen Nolan tallied on the man advantage less than a minute later and
Latendresse completed his first career hat trick to get his team within one.
"We tried to come back, but you can't win games playing hockey when you're
facing a [large] deficit," said Latendresse, who has seven goals over his last
seven games. "It's so hard in this league."
Niklas Backstrom stopped just 27-of-33 shots for Minnesota, which also got
three assists from Martin Havlat.
01/18 10:47:16 ET