Stars try to stop fall against Coyotes

(SportsNetwork.com) - The free-falling Dallas Stars will try to beat the Arizona Coyotes for the second time this month when they host Thursday's battle at American Airlines Center.

The Stars own a dreadful 2-8-2 record over their last 12 games, but one of those victories came against tonight's opponent. Dallas notched a 4-3 regulation win in Arizona on Nov. 11, giving the Stars wins in three of four and six of the last nine meetings with the Coyotes.

Dallas also hopes it can end a lengthy home skid this evening. The Stars have lost seven straight (0-5-2) in Big D, but have beaten the Coyotes in the last four encounters in North Texas.

The Stars opened a five-game homestand Tuesday with their third straight regulation loss, dropping a 6-4 decision to Carolina. The setback pushed Dallas' home record to 1-5-4.

Dallas held a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes, but then allowed the Hurricanes to score five unanswered goals to take control of the game. The Stars were able to cut the deficit to 5-4 late in the third period, but that was as close as they would get.

Tyler Seguin scored twice while Jamie Benn and Cody Eakin each posted a goal and an assist for the Stars.

"I think we are beating ourselves mentally right now," Seguin said. "I don't think anyone here thinks we're playing good hockey."

Kari Lehtonen allowed four goals on 16 shots in the start, while Anders Lindback gave up two goals on nine shots in relief. Lehtonen is expected to start tonight and he boasts a 10-3-4 mark and a 2.17 goals against average in 18 career games against the Coyotes.

The Coyotes will aim to rebound after having a two-game win streak snapped in Tuesday's home loss to Washington. Eric Fehr scored the winning goal at 3:16 of overtime to give the Capitals a 2-1 victory at Gila River Arena.

In the extra session, Brooks Orpik cranked a shot from the top of the left circle that Fehr redirected on net. Mike Smith was there for the first stop, but Fehr grabbed his own rebound and put it in for the win.

Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored the only goal of the game for the Coyotes, while Smith stopped 22 shots in the loss.

"I thought we competed hard tonight," Arizona head coach Dave Tippett said. "The way you generate offense is to play in the offensive zone. We didn't get there enough."

Forwards Martin Hanzal (lower body) and Rob Klinkhammer (upper body) missed Tuesday's game and both are questionable for tonight.

Smith could get the start in net and is 7-4-5 with a 2.09 GAA in his career against Dallas. Backup Devan Dubnyk is 2-5-1 with a 3.07 GAA in eight lifetime outings versus the Stars.

Arizona is kicking off a three-game road trip tonight and will also stop in San Jose and Anaheim during the swing. The Coyotes have won their last two as the guest to improve their road mark to 4-5-1.