Lehtinen lifts Stars over Flames
Dallas has often been an undesirable place for the Calgary Flames to play. And Wednesday night was no exception.
Marty Turco turned aside 18 shots and earned an assist as the Dallas Stars defeated the Flames 4-2 in front of 18,532 fans at the American Airlines Center.
"It's not something I'm looking for every game, but it keeps the other team on their toes and gives us an advantage," he said of the assist.
Turco leads all NHL goaltenders with four points and ranks fourth with 23 wins, same as Jean-Sebastien Giguere of the Anaheim Ducks.
It was Turco's 160th career win, tying the franchise record set by Ed Belfour from 1997-2002.
"Just to be mentioned with him, the great career he had here, we all know what he represents to this organization, the one guy who brought us the Cup, it's not bad company," said Turco, Belfour's backup fortwo seasons but a three-time all-star.
"More than anything, I play to give our team a chance to win every night. But it certainly does feel good."
Calgary prevailed twice over Dallas at the Pengrowth Saddledome earlier this season, 3-1 and 4-2, but has gone winless in its last seven visits to Texas dating back to a 4-3 victory on Dec. 14, 2001.
Jere Lehtinen scored twice for the injury-riddled Stars (28-18-1).
Rookie Joel Lundqvist, the twin brother of New York Rangers netminder Henrik Lundqvist, and Stu Barnes had the other goals.
Dallas wasminus seven injured regulars: Mike Modano, Brenden Morrow, Matthew Barnaby, Jeff Halpern, Steve Ott, Sergei Zubov and Philippe Boucher.
"Every time we get continuity, another guy goes down," Stars head coach Dave Tippett said. "It's a situation where people are thrust into minutes and different roles.
"Our young guys have filled the void. These guys are contributing quality minutes that determine outcomes of games."
Kristian Huselius and Andrew Ference scored for the Flames (24-17-4), who suffered their second straight loss on the heels of a five-game winning streak.
Huselius has stepped up in the absence of injured captain Jarome Iginla, posting five goals and seven points in his past four outings.
Miikka Kiprusoff surrendered three goals on 23 shots.
"This was a [Stars] team missing a majority of their top players," Calgary defenceman Robyn Regehr said. "There were a lot of minor-league guys out there [and] we didn't take advantage of that at all.
"You cannot play just one period and expect to win. We got outhustled."
Lehtinen opened the scoring 3:04 into the contest with his 13th goal of the season.
Huselius tied it 1-1 with a power-play goal, his 20th at 14:13 of the first period, but Dallas regained the lead as Lundqvist scored his first goal in eight NHL appearances 6:28 into the second period.
"I want to stay up here," Lundqvist said. "If I have a bad game, I might be back in Iowa."
Barnes scored in transition a little over two minutes later, beating Kiprusoff high to the glove side with a snapshot for his seventh and a 3-1 lead through two.
Ference trimmed the deficit to 3-2, slinging a low shot past a screened Turco for his third at the 11:42 of the third period, but Lehtinen replied with an empty-net goal with 49 seconds remaining.
It was Lehtinen's second goal of the game and 14th overall.
With files from Sports Network