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Stars Notebook

by Brian Compton

Marty Turco got the octopus off of his back, as he stopped 38 shots en route to his first win, a 2-1 decision over the Red Wings, at Joe Louis Arena after going 0-9-2 in his first 11 tries.
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No Looking Back – The Dallas Stars relished their Game 5 victory over the Detroit Red Wings for about 15 minutes on Saturday.

After that, the attention shifted to Monday night’s Game 6, as the Stars will once again have their season on the line at the American Airlines Center. No team has come back to win a series after losing the first three games since the New York Islanders eliminated the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1975.

“We're still in the same situation, Dallas coach Dave Tippett said. “The last two games, our situation hasn't changed. We have to win to continue to play. You recognize some of the things you did well, take them into Game 6, try to repeat some of those, clean up some of the errors we had.

“But the bottom line is, the all-out effort has to be there. There is no tomorrow for us. That won't change in Game 6.”

Neither will the phenomenal atmosphere in Dallas, as the Stars will attempt to feed off what will surely be a raucous crowd on Monday night.

“Going home, we think the emotion of the crowd will certainly push us on,” Tippett said. “But the momentum of finding some success in games certainly is something that pushes you forward.”

Sense Of ReliefMarty Turco was able to accomplish two feats in Saturday’s Game 5.

Not only did the Stars’ netminder finally win a game at Joe Louis Arena – he was 0-9-2 during his NHL career in Motown entering Game 5 – but his 38 saves also helped extend his team’s season as the series now shifts back to Dallas for Game 6.

“I had the feeling that I just didn't want to be denied again,” Turco said. “We couldn't be; just to keep playing. That was a big focus of mine. I wasn't going to back away from the notion of not winning there, whatever anybody was saying, not that I even heard it all, but you could only imagine. To me, it was just more of killing two birds with one stone – of doing what we need to do to win, to keep playing, but at the same time, just slaying that dragon.”

And it couldn’t have come at a better time.

“I had never won there,” Turco said. “I haven't heard anybody think I couldn't do it, I just hadn't. There wasn't any better time than (Saturday). I would have preferred (to win) Game 1 or 2, but it is what it is and we're going to push forward.”

Different Scenario – In the previous two series of the 2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Stars have used Game 6 to clinch and advance.

This time, they find themselves trying to save their season.

Dallas won on home ice against Anaheim in Round 1 and San Jose in the conference semifinals. But unless they come away with a victory, they’ll have to line up at center ice afterwards and wish the Red Wings luck in the Stanley Cup Finals.

“I think as these playoffs have gone on, guys have gotten a lot of confidence,” veteran forward Mike Modano said. “They've gotten some experience being put into battles like that, pushed to the limits physically. That's a good thing to be tested in those early rounds that we had, to put us in a position like this just to win one at home and see what happens.”

That being said, Stars captain Brenden Morrow knows what his team was able to accomplish in the sixth game of the first two rounds won’t add up to much once the puck drops on Monday night.

“What we did against Anaheim and San Jose, it's not going to make one bit of difference against Detroit,” Morrow said. “We just need to keep doing the things, keep competing the way we're competing, limit our turnovers and make smarter plays.” 


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