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Wings look to extend road win streak to five

Saturday, 01.5.2008 / 8:53 AM ET / Preview
Associated Press
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Wings look to extend road win streak to five

Dallas, TX - A run of four straight regulation losses has been rare for the Dallas Stars. Wins against the Detroit Red Wings have been even harder to come by.

Dallas looks to avoid a season-high fourth consecutive loss on Saturday when it hosts the Red Wings in the second meeting between the teams in four days.

A three-game skid has dropped the Stars (23-15-4) out of sole possession of first place in the Pacific Division, and follows a stretch where they won eight of nine. Dallas lost four straight (0-2-2) last season, but hasn't dropped four in a row in regulation since a five-game skid from Nov. 30-Dec. 10, 2003.

The Stars began their current skid with a 1-0 loss to Nashville on Monday before their struggles against the Red Wings continued with a 4-1 defeat Wednesday at Joe Louis Arena.

Detroit (30-8-3) has won five of its last six meetings (5-0-1) with Dallas, and is 14-4-2 with five ties in the series since the start of the 2000-01 season.

One problem for the Stars against the Red Wings has been the play of goaltender Marty Turco, who stopped 22 of 26 shots in Wednesday's loss. He is 1-9-0 with five ties and a 2.98 goals-against average in 16 career starts versus Detroit.

"You don't have to remind me," Turco said of his lack of success against the Red Wings. "It's not just here, it's anywhere."

Although Chris Osgood made 23 saves and lowered his league-leading GAA to 1.71 in Wednesday's win, he likely will serve as Dominik Hasek's backup Saturday. The Red Wings have alternated starts between the two goalies lately.

Hasek is 4-0-1 with one shutout and a 1.77 GAA in his last five starts against Dallas.

While Detroit has been off since Wednesday, the Stars gave up four first-period goals Thursday in a 6-3 loss at Minnesota.

Stu Barnes, Matt Niskanen and Steve Ott scored for Dallas, which played without injured forwards Jussi Jokinen and Jere Lehtinen, and defensemen Sergei Zubov and Philippe Boucher.

"For us to be a good team, we have to have all the pieces in place," coach Dave Tippett said. "And we're missing a lot of pieces right now. It's just as simple as that."

Only Zubov, who has an upper-body injury, could potentially return Saturday.

Dallas' top line of Brenden Morrow, Mike Ribeiro and Antti Miettinen has combined for no goals and two assists during the three-game skid. The trio combined for seven goals and nine assists in the previous three contests.

"Our ability with the puck lately is not really good," center Mike Modano said. "Play with the puck, passing, it just seems to be a real struggle to get the puck up and down the ice. It's not going to spell too much success for us."

The Red Wings, who improved to 15-2-1 in their last 18 games with Wednesday's victory, have outscored opponents 17-5 during a four-game road win streak.

They reached the halfway point of the season with a league-leading 63 points and are on pace for 126, which would be the second-highest total in franchise history.

"The guys have been real professional the first half," coach Mike Babcock said. "You win 30 in 41 games, you've got to be doing something right."

Leading scorer Henrik Zetterberg had two assists in his return to Detroit's lineup Wednesday after missing five games with back spasms. Tomas Holmstrom, second on the team with 17 goals, is expected to miss his seventh straight game with a knee injury, but could return Sunday at Chicago.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 82 13 37 -15 50
P. Datsyuk 66 16 33 7 49
D. Larkin 80 23 22 11 45
T. Tatar 81 21 24 4 45
G. Nyquist 82 17 26 -2 43
J. Abdelkader 82 19 23 -16 42
M. Green 74 7 28 -6 35
B. Richards 68 10 18 4 28
D. Helm 77 13 13 -2 26
N. Kronwall 64 3 23 -21 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 27 16 6 .921 2.33
J. Howard 14 14 5 .906 2.80