The Dallas Stars remain one of only two teams in the NHL this season without consecutive losses.
The Stars stayed that way after Tyler Seguin scored two goals in 30 seconds late in the second period and Kari Lehtonen made 34 saves in a 5-1 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets at American Airlines Center on Tuesday. The Washington Capitals are the other team without back-to-back losses this season.
Although the Stars rebounded from a 3-0 loss at the St. Louis Blues on Saturday, the first time Dallas had been shut out this season, coach Lindy Ruff wasn't satisfied with the four-goal win.
"Pretty frustrated with the way we played," Ruff said. "The mental part of the game, the focus part, the way we played in the neutral zone was pretty disappointing. We've worked hard to get to where we're at, and we're on a little bit of a rollercoaster ride with the way we're playing right now. I have to straighten that out."
Seguin's first goal came when he fooled rookie goaltender Joonas Korpisalo, making his second career start in as many nights, by faking a slap shot before sending a wrist shot through the five-hole at 16:26 to make it 3-1. A half-minute later, Seguin scored his 17th goal of the season with a wrist shot from the slot that sailed under Korpisalo's glove.
"I kind of stole a [Jason] Spezza move," Seguin said of his first goal. "He likes to do that. I came down, I didn't have much speed, so I looked to take a shot. My glove side was all taken away, so I just tried to make a quick move, and I'm happy it went in."
Stars captain Jamie Benn was credited with the primary assist on the second goal for his 400th career point.
Seguin is tied with Mike Hoffman of the Ottawa Senators for fourth in the NHL in goals.
"Tyler decided that he was going to dominate the game," Ruff said. "He decided he was going to go out and get the legs going and put the puck in the back of the net. And those couple shifts were the difference, but let's start the game like that."
Dallas (23-6-2), which led 1-0 after one period and 4-1 after two, also got goals byJohnny Oduya, Alex Goligoski and Mattias Janmark.
"That was good that we were able to keep that going," Lehtonen said of avoiding the start of a losing streak. "I think we started the game a little loose there, but hung in there. Last two periods were just amazing. We did a great job in those."
The win was Dallas' first at home against Columbus since a 4-2 victory on Oct. 15, 2011.
"They surged," Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said of the Stars. "That's one of their strengths. That six or seven minutes [in the second period] buried us. I thought our first period was probably the best period we've played all year. I thought we had some good chances in the second but they surged and they scored the goals and our chances, we just didn't finish. You wonder what happens if you finish on some of our chances, but yeah, so we end up getting caught there."
Columbus (11-19-3) tied the game 1-1 at 4:32 of the second period when Scott Hartnell scored a power-play goal.
Following the loss, the Blue Jackets locker room remained closed for about 15 minutes due to a players-only meeting.
"It's really none of my business as far as I'm not sure what went on in there and I won't ask any questions," Tortorella said. "I'm hoping that's a step in the right direction. I hope it was productive for them because that's the key. This is about them. If it's productive for them, I love it. We'll find that out when we go into Arizona."
Oduya capitalized on a Columbus turnover to put Dallas ahead with 2:07 remaining in the first period. Defenseman Jack Johnson rimmed the puck around the boards but Oduya picked off his clearing attempt at the left point and took a wrist shot that went through traffic and under Korpisalo's right arm for his third goal of the season.
Columbus, which lost 2-1 to the Tampa Bay Lightning at home on Monday, outshot Dallas 16-8 in the first period but trailed 1-0. The Stars went 10:36 between shots as the Blue Jackets had 14 unanswered shots during that span.
The Blue Jackets tied it when Hartnell set up in the slot and got his stick on a pass from Alexander Wennberg, tapping the puck into the left side of the net 26 seconds after Stars defenseman Patrik Nemeth was called for high sticking.
"I think that's the hard part, we tie it up and then boom, they come back and they get one," Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno said. "We just got to find a way to keep putting our pedal down and really just take over games and just haven't had that mentality or that big play that allows us to do that."
Dallas went ahead to stay at 13:02 when Goligoski tapped a rebound off the end boards past Korpisalo for his third goal of the season. Ales Hemsky's wrist shot from the slot missed to the left of the net, but Goligoski skated in and punched the carom into the top right corner.
"I knew they were a little tired. I think we had three good shifts before that, and I think that group was out there a little long," Goligoski said. "Someone made a good change, and [Ales] Hemsky came right off the bench and was able to put it towards the net. I just kind of followed it up and got a good bounce off the back wall."
Korpisalo made 23 saves before being replaced by Curtis McElhinney to begin the third period. McElhinney allowed a goal on the first shot he faced when Janmark scored on a backhander at 1:47. He finished with six saves.