DALLAS – The Dallas Stars won – and lost.
Defenceman Trevor Daley scored 16 seconds into overtime to give Dallas a 5-4 victory over the Blues on Saturday night. But it was a hollow victory for the Stars, who were eliminated from playoff contention.
With the point for reaching overtime, St. Louis reached 86 points to match Anaheim and Nashville in the race for the final two Western Conference playoff spots.
“It’s almost a Game 7 situation every game we play right now,” St. Louis centre Keith Tkachuk said.
Loui Eriksson had two goals for the injury-depleted Stars in their final home game of the season. Mike Ribeiro and Steve Ott also scored for Dallas, 2-6-2 in its last 10.
The Stars will miss the post-season for the first time since 2001-02 and the second time in the last 12 seasons after coming within two games of reaching the Stanley Cup finals last year.
“You make the playoffs by playing well all year,” Stars coach Dave Tippett said. “We were too inconsistent over the course of the season to give ourselves a chance.”
Brad Boyes had two goals and two assists for the Blues, 6-1-1 in their last eight. Rookie T.J. Oshie added a power-play goal, and David Backes also scored.
With the game tied at four, Daley skated up the right side, and fired Mike Modano’s centring pass past Blues goalie Chris Mason.
“I found a hole,” Daley said. “I think it just bounced off my stick and went in.”
Blues coach Andy Murray was disappointed with his team’s defensive effort.
“When you score four goals on the road you should come away with two points,” Murray said. “Overall our attention to defensive detail wasn’t what we needed it to be.”
Dallas’ Matt Climie made 22 saves in his NHL debut, replacing top goalie Marty Turco, out with a lower-body injury. Climie, getting the call ahead of regular backup Tobias Stephan, was an emergency callup from Idaho of the ECHL, where he was 27-12-1 with a league-best 2.30 goals-against average. Turco had started 73 of 79 games and has played an NHL-high 4,263 minutes.
With the score tied at three and Modano serving a double-minor for high-sticking, Oshie scored his 14th of the season from the left circle with 13:16 remaining.
But Ott went in alone and connected on a backhand from close range with 6:13 left in regulation to tie it at four.
Dallas grabbed a 1-0 lead at 10:57 of the opening period when Eriksson took advantage of a misplay by Mason.
Mason skated behind the net to play the puck, but Dallas’ Tom Wandell was there to pass it in front to Eriksson, who fired into an open net.
Climie stopped the first seven shots he faced before Boyes’ deflection at 2:15 of the second period tied it at one.
Ribeiro notched his 25th of the season at 4:54 of the second period, converted Matt Niskanen’s cross-ice pass to give the Stars a 2-1 edge.
Boyes scored his 32nd from between the circles 1:45 later to draw the Blues even at two, and Backes fired a shot into the upper right corner at 17:10 of the second period to put St. Louis in front.
Eriksson’s rebound 35 seconds into the third period was his career-best 36th goal, pulling the Stars into a three-all tie.
Notes: Dallas finished its home schedule at 20-16-5. … Daley and D Mark Fistric were back for Dallas after missing the previous three games with injuries. … Wandell had his first two NHL assists. … Dallas D Darryl Sydor assisted on Ribeiro’s goal, leaving him one short of 500 career points. … St. Louis won the first three games of the season series by a combined score of 14-4. … The 38-year-old Modano said was unsure whether he’ll be back for his 21st season with the Stars. “I don’t know if it’s my last home game ever,” Modano said. “It crossed my mind. I’m too aggravated right now to make that decision. I’ll spend a long month on the beach and make a rational decision about what’s next.”. … Daley scored his third career overtime goal and second of the season.