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Friday, November 14th (All times eastern)

Phoenix Coyotes (5-6-3-1) at Dallas Stars (7-8-1-0), 8:30 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Dallas Stars hope to stop a four-game losing streak tonight when they welcome the Phoenix Coyotes to the AmericanAirlines Center.

Dallas will be without head coach Dave Tippett this evening, as he is slated to undergo emergency surgery this afternoon to have a disc removed from his neck. Tippett awoke this morning to numbness in his right shoulder and arm, prompting the procedure. He is expected to return to work on Monday and resume his regular duties.

Not even their reliable home ice could help the Stars on Wednesday, as they dropped a 6-2 decision to the Detroit Red Wings.

Brenden Morrow posted a goal and an assist for the Stars, who last lost four in a row from March 11-17, 1996. The last time Dallas dropped five straight came earlier in that disappointing campaign from December 23-January 1. This is also the latest the Stars have been a game below .500 since 95-96.

Bill Guerin added a goal in the loss, while Marty Turco stopped 21-of-27 shots. All 10 of Guerin's goals this season have come at home.

Dallas, normally one of the top defensive clubs in the league, currently sits in the middle of the pack with 44 goals allowed in 16 games. Several things have factored into the early sputtering, including the departure of Norris finalist Derian Hatcher, who signed with Detroit last July.

Another variable has been the continued absence of Selke winner Jere Lehtinen, who remains out due to back spasms. Lehtinen has resumed skating and could be within a week of returning to the lineup.

Dallas defenseman Teppo Numminen, however, is probable tonight after missing Wednesday's tilt with a groin injury. Numminen will face his former team for the first time after being traded to the Stars this past summer. The former Phoenix captain spent the first 15 years of his career with the Coyotes/Winnipeg Jets franchise.

The Stars, who have been outscored 17-4 during their four-game losing streak, will head to Colorado following the game for a Saturday tilt with the Avalanche.

Phoenix, meanwhile, enters tonight's contest on a high note after Thursday's thrilling win over the Avalanche. Branko Radivojevic's overtime goal finished off an impressive comeback and handed Phoenix a 3-2 victory.

Brian Savage and Ladislav Nagy also scored for the Coyotes, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the third period for just their second win in 12 games (2-6-3-1). Sean Burke stopped 27-of-29 shots in regulation and was untested in the extra session.

Phoenix, 2-3-2-1 away from home this season, will close a two-game road trip in Columbus on Sunday.

Dallas, which was 3-0-2 last year against Phoenix, has dominated this series of late and is unbeaten in the last six matchups (4-0-2). The Coyotes are also just 2-6-3 in the last 11 overall meetings and are winless in their last three trips to Dallas (0-2-1).

11/14 12:01:43 ET


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