Found March 20, 2012 on Fox Sports Arizona:
The Dallas Stars and Phoenix Coyotes are tied atop the crowded Pacific Division race. The Stars are hoping a three-day layoff can help get them untracked, while the visiting Coyotes are looking to continue their success in this season series as it wraps up Tuesday night. Dallas (39-28-5) and Phoenix (36-26-11) lead San Jose and Los Angeles in the tight chase for the Pacific title. All four clubs have been alone in first place at various points in the season, and the winner of this game will be again. The Sharks and Kings, both one point off the pace, also square off Tuesday. The three teams that fail to finish atop the division will be left vying with Colorado and Calgary for the final two playoff spots in the Western Conference. The Stars vaulted themselves into the division race with a stunning 10-0-1 run, but they've cooled significantly since, following Wednesday's 5-2 loss at Winnipeg with a 4-1 home defeat to Chicago two days later. "We got to refocus and just forget about it, learn from our mistakes and move on," defenseman Stephane Robidas told the team's official website. "It's like the playoffs. We've been in playoff mode for the last two months and in the playoffs, you can't be moping after a game. We just got to move forward. "There's 10 games left, that's what we got to focus on - we got to focus on the next one, we can't look too far ahead." Robidas also feels a three-day break can help re-energize Dallas. "Sometimes it's just good to get away from it, get a mental break." Returning to the ice against Phoenix, however, doesn't seem ideal. Former Dallas coach Dave Tippett's Coyotes are 7-1-2 in their last 10 meetings with the Stars, winning the last three by a combined 9-2 score. That includes a 4-1 win in Dallas on Feb. 7. The Coyotes enter this matchup on a 3-1-1 run after enduring a season-worst five-game slide. They kept their surge going Sunday, erasing a two-goal deficit in the third period before winning 3-2 in a shootout at Edmonton. "Every game matters so much for us right now," said defenseman Keith Yandle, who has a goal and three assists in the past three meetings with Dallas. Ray Whitney leads the Coyotes with 67 points, including six in his last four games. He snapped a six-game goal drought before converting the winner in the tiebreaker against the Oilers. The 39-year-old winger also has been key to Phoenix's success against Dallas, getting three goals and seven assists in the last 10 meetings, including two assists Feb. 7. Mike Smith, a member of the Stars from 2006-08, is 3-0-2 with a 0.96 goals-against average and a shutout against his former club this season. He made 30 saves in a 2-1 overtime home victory against Dallas on Feb. 18. Jamie Benn and Loui Eriksson hope to solve Smith this time in order to continue their respective strong stretches. Benn has five goals and three assists in nine games since missing six with a leg injury, but just one assist in four meetings with the Coyotes. Eriksson has had similar struggles with Phoenix, getting one goal and one assist in 2011-12. The right wing has seven goals while setting up eight others in his past 12 contests overall. Kari Lehtonen figures to be back in net looking to rebound from Friday's subpar performance, when he stopped 27 of 31 shots to lose in regulation for the first time in 10 starts. He had been 8-0-1 with a 1.29 GAA and three shutouts in the previous nine. Lehtonen is 2-2-1 with a 2.37 GAA in five home meetings with Phoenix.

Stars have 10 games to prove their worth

The last month has been a wonderful ride for the Dallas Stars and their loyalists who kept the faith. The Stars went on a run where they had 10 victories in 11 games and 21 of a possible 22 points. That run shot them up the standings to 3 in the Western Conference as Pacific Division Leader, but only by an eyelash. There are 10 games to go. As we stand this morning, the Stars still...

Coyotes notebook: Never say die

Facing a two-game losing streak and a 2-6-2 start to the month of March, the Coyotes -- who never seem to know when they are beat -- rallied from 2-0 down for the second time in the last three games Sunday night, this time with less than 12 minutes left in regulation. Horribly outplayed in the second period, the Coyotes roared back with goals by Ray Whitney and Raffi Torres to...

Dallas sets franchise records for best and worst attendance

The Dallas Stars have seen their fair share of ups and downs this season. They have been on both sides of the spectrum both with their play on the ice and with their attendance.  An article from The Dallas Morning News reports that the Stars recently had their largest attendance for a single game in franchise history on March 16th. Ironically, the Stars also set a franchise record...

This is what a hockey player’s face looks like after it’s gashed by a skate blade (pic)

Yamma Hamma. Portland Pirates (the AHL affiliate of the Phoenix Coyotes) forward Ryan Duncan suffered the nasty injury documented above after the skate of opponent Casey Wellman made its way across Duncan’s face during a game on Sunday. Not pretty. This gruesome image is right up there with Washington Capitals player Matt Hendricks’ torn ear [...]

Coyotes C Doan faces disciplinary hearing

Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan faces a Wednesday hearing with the NHL's Department of Player Safety for a hit in Tuesday's 4-3 loss to the Dallas Stars.Doan made contact with Stars forward Jamie Benn's head while delivering a hit in the second period. Benn appeared dazed but played the rest of the game. Doan received a two-minute minor for elbowing on the play."...

Game 73 Preview: Phoenix Coyotes @ Dallas Stars

Phoenix Coyotes (36-26-11, 83 pts) @ Dallas Stars (39-28-5, 83 pts) 7:00 PM CT, March 20, 2012 American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas It's all in the Stars hands now. Game 73 of the season and the Stars hold the division lead and the third spot in the Western Conference by the slimmest of margins. The Stars and Coyotes enter tonight's game tied in points but Dallas holds...

Coyotes edged by Stars in shootout

DALLAS (AP) -- Mike Ribeiro had three assists in regulation, then scored in the second round of the shootout to lift the Dallas Stars into sole possession of first place in the Pacific Division with a 4-3 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday night. The teams entered the game tied atop the Pacific with 83 points. Ribeiro faked Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith out of position...

Bill Meltzer: Stars Gameday: 3/20/12 vs. Coyotes

PREVIEW 7:30 AM CDT In a game that could mean the difference between the guaranteed third seed in the Western Conference and fighting just to make the playoffs, the Dallas Stars (39-28-5) play host to the Phoenix Coyotes (36-26-11) at the American Airlines Center. The game starts at 7 p.m. CDT and will be broadcast nationally on NBC Sports Network in the U.S. and TSN2 in Canada...

Coyotes-Stars Preview

The Dallas Stars and Phoenix Coyotes are in the thick of the crowded Pacific Division race. The Stars are hoping a three-day layoff can help get them untracked, while the visiting Coyotes are looking to continue their success in this season series as it wraps up Tuesday night. Dallas (39-28-5) and Phoenix (36-26-11) join San Jose and Los Angeles in the tight chase for the Pacific...

Bill Meltzer: Star Gazing: 3/21/12

While it would have been far preferable for the Dallas Stars to nail down a regulation win last night after leading the Phoenix Coyotes by a 3-1 score in the third period, the bottom line is that Dallas left the building with two points and still (barely) in first place in the hotly contested Pacific Division with nine games left to play. Last night's game at the American...

Ryan Duncan Gets Cut in Face by Skate During AHL Game, Shows Off Aftermath of 45 Stitches (Photo)

If pain heals and chicks dig scars, then it looks like Ryan Duncan won't have any problem with the ladies from now on. Duncan, a former Hobey Baker winner, is currently playing for the Phoenix Coyotes AHL affiliate this season. In overtime of Sunday's game, Duncan took a skate to the face and headed to the hospital for some serious work. Four hours and 45 stiches later, Duncan...

Ryan Duncan’s nose and face look pretty rough after being cut by a skate (Picture)

And the ice skate strikes again. The gentleman you see in the photo above is Ryan Duncan, the 2007 Hobey Baker Award winner at the University of North Dakota and current member of the Portland Pirates — a Phoenix Coyotes’ AHL affiliate. Duncan took a skate to the face in overtime on Sunday afternoon and needed 45 stitches to correct the damage. Looks like the doctors did a decent...

Video- Mike Smith With The Save Of The Night

Mike Smith with the glove save on Loui Eriksson, although Dallas would go on to victory with a shootout win.
All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.