Stars-Coyotes Preview

The Dallas Stars are frustrated, and it may not get better during this two-game road trip.

The Stars attempt to avoid their longest losing streak in 36 years Tuesday night when they seek a rare road victory over the Arizona Coyotes.

Dallas (4-6-4) has followed a 4-0-1 stretch by losing seven in a row (0-5-2) for the first time since March 2009. The Stars seemed on their way to ending the skid Saturday, but wasted a two-goal lead by giving up four straight in the third period of a 5-3 loss to San Jose.

"It's beyond frustrating," center Jason Spezza said. "We should be good at home. We've got to go on the road and get some wins now."

Dallas, though, has allowed 11 goals while losing its last two road games, and is 1-4-1 in the past six visits to Arizona (6-7-1). The team concludes this brief trip Thursday against Los Angeles.

To avoid their first eight-game skid since Nov. 11-29, 1978, as the Minnesota North Stars, Dallas will need to solve its defensive issues.

They've given up 28 goals during the seven-game losing streak, and have been outscored 21-9 in the third period this season. Their average of 3.5 goals allowed in 2014-15 is only better than Columbus (3.6).

"This is painful. I've never gone through anything like this," coach Lindy Ruff said.

One of the few positives to come out of Saturday's loss was Tyler Seguin's sixth career hat trick. Seguin, who ended a four-game goal drought, ranks among the league leaders with 10 goals and 19 points.

He's been limited to one goal and one assist in six career meetings against the Coyotes.

Spezza had a hat trick in his most recent visits to Arizona, but that came with Ottawa in a 4-3 overtime win on Oct. 15, 2013. He has seven goals and 10 points in seven all-time matchups.

The Coyotes had their season-best three-game win streak stopped with Saturday's 1-0 loss to the New York Islanders. Mike Smith was outstanding with 31 saves but gave up a goal with 2:31 left in regulation.

Arizona was shut out for the second time this month after scoring 12 goals during the three-game run.

"We found a way to keep ourselves in it," coach Dave Tippett said. "We just needed somebody to make that play, to make that difference. Unfortunately, they got it at the end."

Tippett's team failed to score a power-play goal for the third straight game. The Coyotes are 3 for 25 on the man advantage in the last seven contests following an 8-for-27 stretch in the previous six.

Smith, who broke into the NHL with Dallas in 2006, is 7-3-5 with a 1.96 goals-against average lifetime against his former team. He's allowed four goals on 134 shots and recorded a pair of shutouts in the past five home meetings.


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