CHICAGO – Vernon Fiddler scored two of Dallas' four goals in the first period, and the Stars clinched a playoff spot with a 6-2 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night.
Dallas stretched its win streak to three and improved to 4-1 against Chicago, outscoring the Stanley Cup champions 20-11 in the season series. Colton Sceviour and Patrick Eaves also scored in the first, and Jamie Benn had two assists in his 500th NHL game.
The Stars (44-21-9) lead the Western Conference with 97 points with eight games left on their schedule. They also are on track for their first division title since they took the Pacific in 2006.
The Blackhawks played without starting goaltender Corey Crawford for the fourth straight game due to an upper-body injury, and Scott Darling was pulled after Dallas' big first period. Michael Leighton made 16 saves in his first NHL appearance since Jan. 27, 2013, for Philadelphia at Tampa Bay.