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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, February 4th (All times Eastern)

Dallas Stars (25-21-9) at Phoenix Coyotes (26-19-10), 9 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Dallas Stars hope to post a second straight win as they continue a three-game road trip with Tuesday's battle against the Phoenix Coyotes.

The Stars opened their swing on Saturday by downing the Anaheim Ducks, 2-0, at Honda Center. It was only Anaheim's third regulation loss of the season at home and it also marked the first time in 2013-14 that a team was able to shut out the NHL-leading Ducks.

Dallas backup goaltender Dan Ellis made 26 saves to record his first shutout of the season and anchor the 2-0 victory in Orange County. Trevor Daley and Jamie Benn scored for the Stars, who snapped a two-game slide and improved to 4-1-1 over their last six games.

"We've been playing a lot better hockey lately. More so just sticking to the way that gives us success," Ellis said.

Although Ellis was able to post the shutout on Saturday, the Stars are likely to return to No. 1 netminder Kari Lehtonen in the crease tonight. Lehtonen is 7-3-4 with a 2.27 goals against average and a .926 save percentage in 15 career games against the Coyotes.

Both Dallas and the Coyotes enter this evening's battle trying to improve their playoff chances. Phoenix is currently three points ahead of the Stars in the West standings, but is one point out of the conference's eighth and final playoff spot.

Phoenix is 5-1-2 over its last eight encounters against the Stars overall and Dallas has lost four straight in the desert. This evening's tilt is the first of three scheduled meetings between the clubs this season.

The Coyotes also picked up a win on Saturday, as they notched a 3-1 decision over the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins. Mike Smith stopped 23 shots to help Phoenix frustrate the Eastern Conference-leading Pens.

Mike Ribeiro had a goal and an assist, while Radim Vrbata and Zbynek Michalek also scored for the Coyotes, who had dropped four of six tilts coming into Saturday's showdown with Pittsburgh.

"This was one of the more complete games we've played this year, that's for sure," said Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett. "Everybody was real competitive and it was a fast game."

The Coyotes improved to 2-1-0 on a five-game homestand that is set to end Friday night against Chicago. Phoenix will play its final tilt before the NHL's Olympic break Saturday in Dallas.

The Stars will complete a three-game road trip tomorrow evening in San Jose before ending its pre-Olympic schedule in Saturday's rematch against the Coyotes.

Phoenix is 16-9-3 as the host this season, while Dallas is 12-12-3 on the road.

02/04 10:55:31 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 3
DUR 5
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR
 
Final
WAS 3
PHI 5
Final
TOR 6
ATL 5
Final
DET 3
CWS 12
Final
MIN 2
CLE 4
Final
STL 5
CIN 2
Final
CHC 7
SDP 6
Final
BOS 1
BAL 4
Final
PIT 6
MIL 2
Final
HOU 4
ANA 0
Final
NYM 5
MIA 4
Final
TAM 0
NYY 9
Final
KAN 0
OAK 5
Final
SFG 4
ARI 1
Final
LOS 6
COL 3
Final
SEA 3
TEX 1
1:07pm Today
TOR
ATL
 
1:08pm Today
DET
CWS
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
MIA
 
1:10pm Today
TAM
NYY
 
1:35pm Today
BOS
BAL
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
MIL
 
1:35pm Today
WAS
PHI
 
2:10pm Today
MIN
CLE
 
2:10pm Today
HOU
ANA
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
OAK
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
SDP
 
4:05pm Today
SFG
ARI
 
4:10pm Today
LOS
COL
 
4:10pm Today
SEA
TEX
 
8:05pm Tonight
STL
CIN
 
Final
TOR 86
WAS 93
Final
GSW 106
NOP 99
Final
CHI 103
MIL 91
Final
HOU 118
DAL 108
3:00pm Today
CLE
BOS
 
5:30pm Tonight
ATL
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
POR
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
SAN
 
Final
TAM 5
DET 1
Final
STL 4
MIN 1
Final
NYR 3
PIT 4
3rd
ANA 0
WIN 1
 
12:00pm Today
NYI
WAS
 
3:00pm Today
CHI
NAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
OTT
MON
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
VAN
 
Final
NOR 3
DUR 5
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR