GAME: Edmonton Oilers (35-28-12-5) at Dallas Stars (40-24-13-2).
TIME: Wednesday, 8:30 p.m. EST.
The Dallas Stars hope to bounce back and resume their quest for home-ice in
the playoffs when they host the Edmonton Oilers.
Dallas is coming off a four-game road trip where it picked up six points.
After winning the first two games - which included a victory in Edmonton - it
concluded the series with back-to-back overtime losses to Vancouver and San
Jose, having never lost in overtime this season before.
Backup goaltender Ron Tugnutt stopped 29 in a 2-1 loss to San Jose on Sunday
for his second straight loss as Marty Turco continues to serve a four-game
suspension for high-sticking Edmonton's Ryan Smyth last Wednesday.
"We don't lose a game in overtime all year and then we do it
back-to-back," Tugnutt said. "That sucks. And, we do it to one team just
behind us (in the standings) and to one team in front of us."
The Stars dropped five points behind the Sharks in the Pacific Division with
both teams having three games left to play and are now tied with the Canucks
for the fourth playoff spot in the West.
"That's going to make the division a lot harder to win," Stars defenseman
Philippe Boucher said about the weekend losses. "But now it's about feeling
good about our game going into the playoffs. Let's get home-ice advantage (in
the first round) and go into the playoffs on a roll."
The Stars, with an NHL-best 25 victories at home, have not lost at home
since Jan. 10, going 13-0-4 in that span, and play two of their remaining three
games at the American Airlines Center.
They have excelled against the Oilers, going 15-0-1 in the last 16 meetings
in Dallas and 32-5-4-1 overall since moving to Texas in 1993.
Dallas has points in 18 of their last 20 games (13-2-3-2).
The Oilers, who play their remaining two games on the road, dented their
playoff hopes with a 1-0 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday. They had
earned a point in 16 consecutive games, going 10-0-2-4 before the loss.
Edmonton has 87 points and dropped to ninth place when Nashville defeated
Chicago to move into the eighth and final playoff spot. The Predators also have
87 points but have one extra game.
Edmonton, 29th in the league killing penalties on the road and 27th overall,
allowed the lone goal on a power play Tuesday. It has surrendered 41 goals in
180 chances while short-handed.
The Oilers went 0-for-4 with the man advantage against St. Louis and owns
the worst power play unit in the league on the road with just 11 goals in 152
STANDINGS: Oilers - 87 points, 4th place, 9 PB, Northwest Division. Stars -
95 points, 2nd place, 5 PB, Pacific Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Oilers - Smyth, 22 goals, 36 assists and 58 points; Georges
Laraque, 99 PIM. Stars - Bill Guerin, 33 goals and 66 points; Jason Arnott, 36
assists; Steve Ott, 152 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through March 29): Oilers - Power play: 12.9 percent (42 for
325), 29th in NHL. Penalty killing: 81.2 percent (276 for 340), 27th. Stars -
Power play: 15.8 percent (50 for 317), 17th. Penalty killing: 86.2 percent (257
for 298), 3rd.
GOALTENDERS: Oilers - Ty Conklin (16-13-4, 1 SO, 2.39 GAA); Jussi Markkanen
(10-14-3, 2, 2.37). Stars - Turco (36-21-13, 9, 1.98); Tugnutt (3-5-0, 1,
SEASON SERIES: Stars, 2-1.
LAST MEETING: March 24; Stars, 4-3, OT. At Edmonton, Guerin scored 3:11 into
overtime to lift Dallas to a come-from-behind victory and clinch a playoff
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Oilers - 13-16-8-2 on the road; Stars - 25-6-8-0 at home.