Sign in with your NHL account:
  • Submit
  • Or
  • Sign in with Google

Stars Move Closer to Playoff Spot With Win Over Coyotes

Wednesday, 02.05.2014 / 1:05 AM / Inside Edge
By Mark Stepneski
Share with your Friends

Stars Move Closer to Playoff Spot With Win Over Coyotes
The Dallas Stars moved closer to the final playoff spot in the Western Conference Tuesday night, defeating the Phoenix Coyotes, 3-1.

The Dallas Stars moved closer to the final playoff spot in the Western Conference Tuesday night, defeating the Phoenix Coyotes, 3-1, at Arena. Antoine Roussel’s goal early in the third period snapped a 1-1 tie and held up as the game-winner for the Stars, who moved to within two points of the final wild card spot in the West.

"We knew that was one of the biggest games of the year," said Roussel. "We didn't start the way we wanted, but the third period was really good for us and we got the win. The last 10 minutes we locked it down and didn't give them much."

Said Stars coach Lindy Ruff: “It was what we talked about this morning; it was two teams that are pretty similar. Somebody is going to take advantage of an opportunity and we were able to push through.”

On hand to watch the victory were fathers of several of the players, who are on the Phoenix and San Jose legs of this road trip.

“It was a big win for us tonight,” said Stars forward Ryan Garbutt. “We had the dads in town and it was a fun game for the guys to play in. It’s kind of nice for us to be on a roll right now.”

Shawn Horcoff and Garbutt also scored and Kari Lehtonen stopped 27 of 28 shots for the Stars, who improved to 5-1-1 over their last seven games, allowing just nine goals over that stretch.

“It’s just working hard in your own end. The guys are coming to play every night, everyone is working hard and it’s fun to be a part of,” said Garbutt. “It’s pretty easy when you have a goaltender like Kari Lehtonen in net.”

The Stars remain in 10th place in the West, but moved to within one point of ninth-place Phoenix and to within two points of Vancouver, which holds the final wild card spot. The Stars can move into a playoff spot based on points percentage with a win in San Jose on Wednesday.

The Coyotes, who were coming off an impressive victory over Pittsburgh on Saturday, lost an opportunity to put some distance between themselves and the Stars.

“It all comes down to how you play,” said Coyotes coach Dave Tippett. “The Pittsburgh game we played pretty solid and did good things with the puck and won enough one-on-one battles, too, and stayed competitive in the game. Tonight was the exact opposite. (We) turned over a lot of pucks and in the one-on-one battles just didn’t do enough to give ourselves a better chance to win.”

Both teams had good looks in the first period, but there was no scoring. Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith made a sharp glove save on Rich Peverley off the rush. Lehtonen stopped a Martin Hanzal bid from the slot.

The Stars went on their second power play early in the second, had some good pressure but couldn’t take advantage. Lehtonen came up big, stopping Coyotes forward David Moss on a breakaway 4:50 into the second.

The Coyotes got the game’s first goal at 9:18 of the second when Antoine Vermette stole the puck in the neutral zone, broke in on net and beat Lehtonen with a backhand shot to put Phoenix up 1-0.

The Stars answered a little more than three minutes later, cashing in on their third power play of the game. After blocking a clearing attempt, Horcoff went to the front of the net, took a centering pass from Tyler Seguin and beat Smith with a close range backhand shot to make it a 1-1 game at the 12:32 mark of the second period.

The Stars took the lead 3:25 into the third period, capitalizing on a Coyotes turnover and bad line change. The end result was Garbutt setting up Roussel, who scored from the slot to put the Stars up 2-1.

Smith made several sharp saves to keep the Coyotes within a goal, but his team couldn’t come deliver the equalizer and Garbutt scored into an empty net with 26.7 seconds left to seal the win for the Stars, who wrap up the road trip Wednesday night in San Jose.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.




1 NSH 64 41 16 7 192 155 89
2 ANA 64 40 17 7 189 177 87
3 STL 63 40 18 5 197 159 85
4 CHI 64 38 21 5 188 152 81
5 WPG 64 32 20 12 179 172 76
6 VAN 62 36 23 3 180 167 75
7 MIN 62 33 22 7 176 161 73
8 CGY 62 33 25 4 175 160 70
9 LAK 62 29 21 12 166 162 70
10 SJS 64 31 25 8 179 181 70
11 COL 63 27 25 11 167 182 65
12 DAL 63 27 26 10 196 210 64
13 ARI 63 20 36 7 138 214 47
14 EDM 63 18 35 10 143 208 46


J. Benn 63 23 37 -3 60
T. Seguin 55 29 30 0 59
J. Spezza 63 15 37 -5 52
E. Cole 57 18 15 4 33
T. Daley 60 16 17 -10 33
J. Klingberg 49 10 23 1 33
C. Eakin 60 14 14 -2 28
A. Hemsky 57 9 17 -9 26
A. Goligoski 63 2 24 1 26
A. Roussel 61 12 11 -11 23
K. Lehtonen 25 13 10 .905 2.97
J. Enroth 13 25 2 .900 3.30
#LONESTARSSTATE GAMEDAY FAN is the official Web site of DSE Hockey Club, L.P.  The Stars name and logos are registered trademarks of the NHL and the Stars. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 DSE Hockey Club, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

Corporate Partnerships | Contact UsPrivacy Policy | AdChoices | Job Opportunities | Terms of Use | Site Map | Find us on Google+