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Canucks look to cure road woes against Stars

By Jeff Mezydlo

Stats Senior Writer

Vancouver (38-24-9) at Dallas (33-31-8), 8:30 p.m. EST

DALLAS (AP) -- The Vancouver Canucks need to improve their play

on the road if they want to better their playoff position in the

Western Conference standings.

The Dallas Stars, meanwhile, need to play better - regardless of

location - just to reach the postseason.

The Canucks look to avoid a fifth straight road loss Tuesday

night when they face the Stars, who are trying to snap a

three-game overall losing streak.

Vancouver (38-24-9) is 16-4-1 since Feb. 3, but its recent play

away from home has hindered its progression up the conference


In the opener of a six-game road trip, the Canucks had their

four-game winning streak snapped with a 5-1 loss at lowly

Phoenix on Saturday. Vancouver, which is fifth in the West and

two points behind Chicago in the race for home-ice advantage in

the first round of the playoffs, is 16-13-5 away from home.

The Canucks, who play seven of their final 11 away from home,

are 0-3-1 on the road since winning 3-2 at Toronto in a shootout

on Feb. 21. They last suffered five straight road losses from

Jan. 15-Feb. 5, 2008.

Vancouver, which is within reach of Northwest Division-leading

Calgary and the No. 3 seed, plays four of its next five on the

swing against teams in the playoff hunt.

"We haven't won on the road in our last four (games) and we're

going to get some other opportunities to win on this trip and

obviously we're going to have to play better," coach Alain

Vigneault told the Canucks' official Web site.

The Canucks can start with a rare road win against Dallas.

Vancouver is 1-1-1 versus the Stars (33-31-8) this season,

including a 2-1 loss at Dallas on Feb. 13. The Canucks are 1-6-2

in Dallas since the start of the 2003-04 season.

Vancouver won 4-3 on March 15, 2008 for its lone victory over

that stretch.

Despite their recent road struggles, the Canucks are facing a

Dallas team that's coming off an 0-3-0 road trip after winning

two straight at home. The Stars open a three-game homestand

before playing five of their final seven on the road.

The Stars, who are 12th in the West and three points behind

Nashville for the eighth and final playoff spot, lost 5-2 at San

Jose on Saturday.

"We need to keep pushing," said defenseman Stephane Robidas, who

scored for the Stars. "We have 10 games left and we can't give


Dallas will be without star forward Brad Richards indefinitely

after he broke his hand Saturday in his first game back from

missing 15 with a broken wrist.

Loui Eriksson continued his breakout season with his 33rd goal

Saturday and has one with two assists versus Vancouver in


Marty Turco made 25 saves against the Sharks and has allowed 10

goals in his last three starts. He is 17-5-1 with a 1.82 GAA

lifetime versus Vancouver.

Roberto Luongo was pulled after allowing three goals in two

periods Saturday for Vancouver, which yielded one fewer to

Phoenix than it did in its previous four games.

"I think a game like (Saturday) is really one that you just put

behind you," said Luongo, who is 27-10-6 with a 2.40 GAA this

season and 7-4-2 with a 2.02 GAA against Dallas.

Mats Sundin and Ryan Kesler each had a goal with an assist in

Vancouver's 4-2 win over Dallas last Tuesday.


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