Flames hope to rebound against Stars

While the Dallas Stars have used a six-game point streak to climb into the playoff picture, the Calgary Flames are kicking themselves for giving away at least a point last time out.

The Flames hope to avoid a similar mistake this evening and draw closer to a postseason position with a contest against the visiting Stars.

Following an 0-2-2 homestand, the Flames split a pair of road games in Phoenix and Anaheim. They picked up a two-goal win over the Coyotes on Thursday, but were dealt a 3-2 defeat by the Ducks the following night.

The loss to Anaheim was a disappointing one as Calgary was 46 seconds away from forcing overtime. However, the Ducks' Ryan Getzlaf found the back of the net in the final minute to prevent the Flames from picking up a much-needed point.

Calgary, which opens a three-game homestand, is four points back of the final two playoff spots in the Western Conference currently held by Dallas and San Jose.

Curtis Glencross and Alex Tanguay scored against the Ducks for the Flames, while backup Leland Irving gave up all three goals on 38 shots in his sixth career start.

"We were in a battle," Flames head coach Brent Sutter said. "We gave up a goal with 40 seconds left, especially like that. A two-on-five coming into your zone, we just all stood there and watched. It's a tough way to lose a game, especially it's big points we let get away from us."

The Stars added to the Flames' deficit for a playoff spot with their 3-1 win over the Oilers on Friday. The victory pushed Dallas into a tie with San Jose in the standings and has them two points back of first-place Phoenix in the Pacific Division.

Kari Lehtonen made 19 saves and Michael Ryder potted his team-leading 27th goal of the season for the Stars, who are 5-0-1 in their last six games and 6-1-2 over the past nine. Radek Dvorak and Tomas Vincour also scored.

"It was nice for us to get a couple greasy, ugly goals," Lehtonen said. "We played really tight the whole third period and they didn't get to start any kind of comeback."

The Stars' third straight road win came in the opener of a three-game swing that ends in Vancouver on Tuesday.

The Flames swept the four-game series between these clubs last season, but the Stars opened up this year's set with a 3-2 overtime win at home on Feb. 16. Mike Ribeiro had the game-winner and Lehtonen tallied 25 saves, while Jarome Iginla and Mike Cammalleri scored for the Flames and Miikka Kiprusoff came up with 29 saves.