NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, March 6th
(All times Eastern)
Dallas Stars (35-26-5) at Vancouver Canucks (41-17-8), 10 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Canucks hope they are just getting their slump out of
the way before the playoffs.
Vancouver tries to avoid a fourth loss in five games tonight as it takes on
the hard-charging Dallas Stars.
The Canucks are coming off just their second regulation loss since Jan. 15
(13-2-5), a 5-3 setback to the Sabres on Saturday. Vancouver has now split the
first two contests of a seven-game homestand and trailed by three goals just
over five minutes into Saturday's loss.
Roberto Luongo was touched for the early tallies and was pulled after facing
only seven shots. Cory Schneider yielded one goal on 17 shots in relief, while
David Booth scored twice and former Sabre Zack Kassian added a late goal.
"It was a bad start, I've got to be better than that, obviously, for my
teammates," said Luongo. "The boys battled hard to try and come back and we
played a pretty good match, I'll take responsibility for this one."
With 90 points, the Canucks remain one up on the Blues and Red Wings for the
most in the Western Conference, but they now trail the Rangers by one for the
Vancouver is 1-1-2 over its past four games overall and one of those defeats
was a 3-2 overtime setback in Dallas on Feb. 26. The loss snapped the Canucks'
six-game win streak over the Stars, though they have still won five straight
at home in this series.
Michael Ryder, Mike Ribeiro and Loui Eriksson all had the goals in the win
over the Canucks, with Eriksson earning the two points for the Stars on his
tally at 3:52 of overtime.
Eriksson was one of the heroes in Dallas' most recent game as well. The
forward had a short-handed goal and an assist in regulation, then scored one
of two shootout goals in a 3-2 win over Calgary on Sunday. Jamie Benn also
scored in the tiebreaker and Kari Lehtonen stopped both skaters he faced after
making 36 saves through overtime while adding an assist.
Ryder scored a goal to push his point streak to six straight games (5 goals, 2
assists), but more importantly, it helped Dallas record a point in a seventh
straight game (6-0-1) and ninth in its last 10 contests (7-1-2).
"Every point is important. You can see the parity out there between the two
teams and it's going to come down to that last week so you've got to gather
what you can," said Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan.
Dallas also moved into a tie with Phoenix for first place in the Pacific
Division and the two clubs are two points up on San Jose and three ahead of
Los Angeles in the division race.
The Stars wrap a three-game swing tonight looking for a fifth straight victory
on the road.
03/06 10:55:58 ET