The Phoenix Coyotes have fired 60 shots at Dallas Stars goaltenders Marty Turco and Mike Smith this season. They're still looking to put one in the back of the net.
After having been shut out in the first three games against their Pacific Division rivals, the surging Coyotes face off against the Stars - who are coming off a shutout loss - at Jobing.com Arena on Saturday.
On Oct. 21, Smith made 22 saves in his NHL debut as Dallas came away with a 4-0 road win.
Turco continued the shutout streak Nov. 9, when he turned aside only 13 shots in a 1-0 win in Glendale, Ariz. He recorded the third shutout of the Coyotes this season Wednesday with a 25-save performance in a 3-0 win at Dallas.
It also was the second straight shutout for Turco as the Stars played without injured forwards Mike Modano (hip), Eric Lindros (foot) and Brenden Morrow (groin).
Overall, Phoenix has scored just four goals in its last six losses to the Stars since January and has failed to light the lamp against them in 196 minutes, 13 seconds.
"There's no explanation for it," Turco said after his third shutout overall this season.
The latest loss to the Stars has been the only blemish on what's been the Coyotes' (11-16-0) best stretch of the season. Phoenix won for the fourth time in five games Thursday after a 2-1 shootout victory over Chicago.
Ed Jovanovski scored the tying goal in the second period, and Shane Doan and Mike Zigomanis beat Blackhawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin in the final two rounds of a six-round shootout.
Doan said he knows Khabibulin quite well. The two were teammates for three seasons in Phoenix and one year in Winnipeg before that, and they also have practiced together in Arizona during the summer.
"I've gotten to play with and against Nicky for such a long time," Doan said. "I think he's one of the top three goalies in the world."
While the Coyotes have future Hall of Fame goaltender Curtis Joseph on the roster, they may have a future starter in Mikael Tellqvist. Acquired from Toronto on Nov. 28 for Tyson Nash and a draft pick, Tellqvist has won two straight starts with a 1.45 goals-against average. He's yet to face the Stars in his four-year career.
Joseph, a 435-game winner who will turn 40 in April, is 7-12-0 with a 3.42 GAA. He has been saddled with all three losses against Dallas.
The Stars enter this contest looking to avoid their first five-game road losing streak since Nov. 4-22, 2003. They also know how the Coyotes feel after being shut out by Edmonton 2-0 on Friday.
Turco's overall shutout string reached 154 minutes, 19 seconds before giving up a first-period power-play goal to Marc-Andre Bergeron 11:13 into the contest. Turco also allowed Raffi Torres' goal less than 3 minutes into the second period.
The loss was only Dallas' fourth in 25 home games against the Oilers since moving from Minnesota in 1993.
"We have a lot of premier players out," Turco said after the Stars again were without Modano, Lindros and Morrow. "But that's not an excuse. We had a good idea what (the Oilers) wanted to do, and they carried it out."