Blues 4, Stars 3, SO
The Stars used to relish shootouts. Jussi Jokinen and Sergei Zubov thrived in the tiebreaker, and Marty Turco always seemed to come up with the big stop.
Dallas started the season with a 32-14 all-time record in the shootout.
Those days are long gone. Jokinen and Zubov wear different uniforms, and the Stars are now 1-5 in shootouts this season.
That's five points down the drain.
The St. Louis Blues became the latest team to beat the Stars in the tiebreaker, winning 4-3 at the AAC on Wednesday night.
scored for Dallas in the first round, but Andy McDonald countered for St. Louis. Mike Ribeiro
of the Stars made a nifty move but hit the goal post with his second-round attempt, and Brad Boyes scored through Marty Turco's pads to give the Blues the edge.
St. Louis goaltender Ty Conklin denied Stephane Robidas
in the third round, and the Blues left town with the extra point.
"I guessed he was going to shoot low and that's what happened,'' Conklin said after St. Louis won its first shootout of the season after falling in the first two.
Dallas is 3-1-1 in its last five games, but the shootout loss still stung despite getting a point courtesy of Brenden Morrow
's goal in the final minute of regulation.
"The shootout didn't go our way, but we could have been a lot worse off,'' coach Mark Crawford said.
The Stars work on their shootout skills in practice. They have contests so Crawford can gauge who to use in the tiebreaker. Maybe it's the law of averages catching up with the Stars after their early run of shootout success.
Whatever the cause, this run of failure is especially frustrating.
"It's a big part of the game and we do put emphasis on it in practice,'' Dallas' James Neal
said after returning from a two-game league suspension. "We've got to bear down and find a way to win that extra point. It's so big.''
Erik Johnson scored a first-period power-play goal to snap St. Louis' 0-for-19 drought with the man-advantage. The Blues started the night last in the league on the power play at just over 12 percent.
David Backes added a goal and an assist in regulation, and Conklin stopped 34 shots.
T.J. Oshie had given the Blues a 3-2 edge with 8:59 remaining, firing a wrist shot from the right circle for St. Louis' first lead.
But Morrow won a wrestling match at the net and tied it at 3 for Dallas on a deflection with 25.4 seconds left in regulation and Turco off for a sixth attacker.
Robidas scored on the power play, and Toby Petersen
added a goal for the Stars, who got a 35-save performance from Turco.
Dallas had the game's first nine shots and took the lead on Robidas' one-timer at from the left point at 5:37.
But the Stars couldn't maintain that early momentum and St. Louis answered at 9:00 of the first period as Johnson fired into an open net with the man advantage.
"It was a sloppy game. We started out doing what we wanted to do, but for some reason we decided not to do it anymore,'' Richards said. "That's not how we wanted to play. We started turning pucks over and not doing what we did in the first 10 minutes. We weren't going to keep them to zero shots for the whole game.''
Petersen's one-timer from the right circle got through Conklin's pads 1:43 after Johnson's goal to give Dallas a 2-1 edge.
But again, the Stars couldn't hold the lead as Backes' rebound at 10:02 of the first drew St. Louis even.
Neal, Dallas' top goal-scorer with 11, was back on the top line with Richards and Loui Eriksson
. The Stars had won both games with Neal out, and his teammates kidded him plenty about that during his suspension.
"It felt good coming back,'' Neal said. "I stepped right back in. But it's never fun when you step back in and the guys lose.''
-- The Stars honored team executive and former player Brett Hull in pregame ceremonies recognizing Hull's recent induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Team owner Tom Hicks announced that Hull, who walked onto the ice holding the Stanley Cup, will become the first member of the Stars Walk of Legends.
-- Dallas defenseman Nicklas Grossman
missed his second straight game due to a lower-body injury.
-- The Stars scored a power play goal for the third consecutive game. They have five man-advantage goals in their last three games.
-- Stephane Robidas
scored his fourth power play goal of the season. He came into the game tied for second in the NHL among defensemen in power play goals. Robidas now has seven points in his last seven games.
-- Brad Richards
picked up two assists tonight, giving him eight points (1 goal, 7 assists) over the last three games. He picked up his 12th power play assist of the season in the first period. Richards came into the game ranked third in the league in power play assists and tied for fourth in overall assists and points. Richards has a 10-game points streak.
-- Tom Wandell
's first-period assist gives him three points (1 goal, 2 assists) in his last three games.
-- Brenden Morrow
's goal gives him points in each of the last two games (1 goal, 1 assist).
-- Mike Modano's two assists give him points in five of the last seven games (3 goals, 4 assists).
|Three star selections