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Dallas Stars vs. Anaheim Ducks @NHLdotcom
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GAME: Dallas Stars (11-13-3-0) at Anaheim Mighty Ducks (8-10-4-5).

TIME: Sunday, 8 p.m. EST.

The Anaheim Mighty Ducks finished November with a flurry, raising hopes that they might recapture the form that helped them reach the Stanley Cup Finals last season.

December hasn't been nearly as kind to the Ducks.

Anaheim hopes to snap a three-game losing streak as it hosts the slumping Dallas Stars at the Arrowhead Pond.

After struggling through October and the early parts of the season's second month, the Ducks earned points in 11 straight games to close November, going 4-0-3-4 to climb within striking distance of first place in the tightly packed Pacific Division.

But Anaheim has lost three in a row to start December, including Friday's 5-2 loss at Atlanta, which completed an 0-3-1 road trip for the Ducks.

Jean-Sebastien Giguere, who backstopped the Ducks to the Western Conference crown and earned the Conn Smyth Trophy as the postseason MVP last June, was pulled in the third period after stopping 23 of 28 shots. Giguere was burned for four goals on 24 shots in Wednesday's 7-2 loss at Detroit.

"At some point, we need to realize the season is on the line," said Giguere, who owns a 4-12-2 record this season. "It's nothing to be shocked about. It's just not working. This game is very simple. It's all 20 of us."

Winless in their last 10 road games, the Ducks are hoping to gain some momentum at home.

"We need some home cooking," Anaheim coach Mike Babcock said.

The Stars have dropped three straight, including Saturday's 2-1 loss at San Jose. Pierre Turgeon scored the lone goal for Dallas, which dropped to 1-7 in its last eight games -- by far its worst skid of the season.

Turgeon, who missed the previous two games with a hip injury, scored with 4:03 remaining after skating in from the blue line and wristing it just inside the left post.

Dallas center Jason Arnott has missed two straight games with a sore groin.

STANDINGS: Stars - 25 points, 4th place (tied), 5 PB, Pacific Division. Mighty Ducks - 25 points, 4th place (tied), 5 PB, Pacific Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Stars - Bill Guerin, 15 goals and 25 points; Arnott and Sergei Zubov, 13 assists; John Erskine, 56 PIM. Mighty Ducks - Sergei Fedorov and Steve Rucchin, 9 goals; Fedorov, 12 assists and 21 points; Todd Simpson, 72 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through Dec. 5): Stars - Power play: 19.0 percent (20 for 105), 8th in NHL. Penalty killing: 85.6 percent (83 for 97), 8th. Mighty Ducks - Power play: 15.5 percent (17 for 110), 18th. Penalty killing: 82.0 percent (91 for 111), 24th.

GOALTENDERS: Stars - Marty Turco (10-11-3, 1 SO, 2.31 GAA); Ron Tugnutt (1-1-0, 0, 2.12). Mighty Ducks - Giguere (4-12-2, 0, 2.91); Martin Gerber (4-3-2, 1, 2.37).

SEASON SERIES: Stars, 1-0-1.

LAST MEETING: Nov. 19; Tie, 3-3, OT. At Dallas, Andy McDonald scored the equalizer on a shot from center ice with 11:41 left in regulation as Anaheim rallied from a two-goal deficit.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Stars - 3-9-1-0 on the road; Mighty Ducks - 5-3-2-2 at home.

Associated Press
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