The Dallas Stars keep finding ways to win games, while the Detroit Red Wings keep looking for ways to put the puck in the net.
After starting the season with five straight victories, the Stars try to push their current winning streak to four Friday night when they host a Red Wings club that's struggling offensively.
Dallas (8-1-0), off to the best start in the 38-year history of the franchise, overcame a sluggish effort to defeat Vancouver 2-1 at home Monday night.
The Stars had scored nine goals in their previous two games but had a tough time generating chances against the Canucks, recording only 12 shots through two periods and none in the first 14 minutes of the second. Dallas finished with a season-low 26 shots.
It didn't matter, though, as the Stars got another excellent effort in goal from Marty Turco, and Mike Modano scored his team-leading fifth goal during a 5-on-3 advantage in the third period to break a 1-all tie.
"No matter what we do sometimes, we look like the Keystone Kops out there," said Dallas coach Dave Tippett, whose team's only defeat was a 2-0 loss at San Jose on Oct. 17. "But luckily we did enough to win."
The Stars put together a strong defensive game to earn the victory after riding a pair of big offensive performances to win in their previous two contests. Dallas killed off all six Vancouver power plays, and has given up only two goals in its last 26 short-handed situations over the last five games.
Turco made 33 saves Monday and ranks among the league leaders in wins (seven) and goals-against average (1.86).
"It doesn't feel like we're running over teams," Turco said. "But we're coming out on top in the end, and that's all that matters."
Detroit (4-4-1) snapped a three-game losing streak with a 2-1 home win over San Jose on Wednesday, but continued to have problems offensively. The Wings have only five goals in their last four games and were outscored 12-3 during the three-game slide.
A reason for the recent goal shortage is Detroit's struggling power play. The Red Wings scored for just the third time in 34 chances Wednesday when Mathieu Schneider got his team-high fourth goal early in the third period.
"(The puck) just went end over end off the top of the toe of the blade of my stick," Schneider said. "One of those flukey goals, but I'll take it."
After finishing with the NHL's best power-play percentage (22.1) last season, the Red Wings are 5-for-49 (10.2) to rank near the bottom of the league.
Detroit was 2-1-1 against the Stars last season, winning once at Dallas, 4-1 on Dec. 27. The Red Wings won the last meeting 3-2 at Joe Louis Arena on Apr. 17, 2006.