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Edmonton Oilers 3, Dallas Stars 1 FINAL @NHLdotcom

DALLAS (AP) _ The Edmonton Oilers picked the perfect time for their first regular-season win in Dallas in eight years.

Ryan Smyth broke a second-period tie with a power-play goal, and the Oilers boosted their playoff chances with a 3-1 victory over the Stars on Wednesday night.

Edmonton, 0-15-1 in 16 previous trips to Dallas, improved to 89 points to draw even with seventh-place St. Louis in the Western Conference.

``We've definitely had our fair share of losses here,'' Smyth said. ``We knew we had to snap out of it at some point and there's no better time than right now. This puts us back in the playoff hunt again.''

The Stars, whose franchise-record home unbeaten streak ended at 17 games (13-0-4), fell to fifth in the West, two points behind Vancouver.

Dallas is trying to secure home ice in the first round of the playoffs by finishing fourth. The Stars play Friday at Minnesota and Sunday at home against Chicago.

``It does hurt our chances,'' Stars captain Mike Modano said. ``We have to run the board these last two games. It certainly makes it more interesting.''

Radek Dvorak scored the tying goal in the second period, and Ty Conklin had 29 saves for the streaking Oilers, 11-1-2-4 in their last 18 games.

Marc-Andre Bergeron's goal from the right circle with 7:34 left made it 3-1.

``The guys stepped up and got some big goals for us,'' Edmonton defenseman Jason Smith said. ``But the constant for us when we win is goaltending and we got that tonight.''

Edmonton has one game left, Saturday at Vancouver.

The Oilers' playoff hopes took a hit Tuesday night when they lost at St. Louis. That put more pressure on them to break the Dallas jinx.

``I wasn't happy with the way we played in St. Louis,'' Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. ``This is an important rebound by the club. We're right back in it. We're one win away, in our minds, from getting in.''

Ron Tugnutt stopped 20 shots for the short-handed Stars.

Tugnutt, playing only his 10th game this season, continued to start while Marty Turco served the third of a four-game league suspension. Turco was punished for high-sticking Smyth at Edmonton on March 24.

Tugnutt has lost all three decisions during Turco's suspension, two in overtime.

The Stars were also without centers Jason Arnott (groin) and Stu Barnes (upper body); right wings Rob DiMaio (foot), Scott Young (back) and Jere Lehtinen (back); and defensemen Sergei Zubov (leg) and Jon Klemm (groin).

``Injuries are part of the game and everyone goes through it,'' Stars coach Dave Tippett said. ``At the end of the day, you're looking for players to fill those voids and we didn't get that.''

Dallas had the NHL's longest home unbeaten streak since Detroit's 19-game run from Dec. 31, 2000, to April 7, 2001. The Stars' previous home loss was Jan. 10 against Colorado.

Defenseman Teppo Numminen played almost 22 minutes for the Stars after missing five games because of a heart problem. Numminen was cleared to play by team doctors after a series of tests showed the dilated aorta that put his career in jeopardy isn't considered life-threatening.

Dallas got the only goal of the first period at 16:36 when Pierre Turgeon skated to the net and converted Shayne Corson's centering pass.

Edmonton tied it at 6:49 of the second period on Dvorak's 15th goal.

Smyth gave the Oilers a 2-1 advantage at 11:51 of the second period with his 23rd goal off Mike York's goal-mouth feed. Edmonton capitalized on a double minor for high-sticking whistled against Brenden Morrow.

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