Shooting For History

Mike Modano is near yet another milestone in his storied career.

The veteran center will try to get closer to becoming the highest-scoring American player in NHL history Monday night when the Dallas Stars host the San Jose Sharks.

Modano is the Stars' all-time leading scorer with 1,230 career points, two shy of the record for a United States-born player held by Hall of Fame defenseman Phil Housley.

"It's amazing what he has accomplished. He is a great ambassador for the game," Stars coach Dave Tippett said. "When you think of USA hockey, he is in the forefront of hockey in the U. S."

The 37-year-old Modano, though, has struggled early this season with four points in 10 games. But he did notch his first multipoint game in Saturday's 5-3 win at Phoenix. The Stars captain had a goal - his 509th, which also leads all American-born players - and an assist.

"I'm reminded of the record all the time right now," said Modano, who has played all 18 of his seasons with the Stars after being the first overall pick in 1988 when the franchise was located in Minnesota. "I'm just concerned about having a positive impact on my team. I have not been going good recently, and need to take little steps before the big ones."

Modano, who led Dallas (5-3-2) to its first Stanley Cup title in 1999, has 57 points in 64 lifetime contests with San Jose (5-5-1), but had only three in six games last season.

The Stars went 5-3-0 against the Sharks in 2006-07, but the teams split four meetings at Dallas.

Oddsmakers from SBG Global have made Dallas -120 money line favorites (NHL Odds) for today's game, the over/under has been set at 5 goals (Matchup). Current public betting information shows that 50% of bets for this game have been placed on Dallas -120 (View NHL Bet Percentages).

San Jose has played eight of its first 11 games on the road, going 4-3-1 away from the HP Pavilion, including 1-2-0 entering the final leg of their current four-game road trip.

The Sharks have dropped their last two games, scoring only one goal in each contest after starting the trip last Monday with a 4-1 victory at Calgary. They took five points from a possible eight during a season-opening four-game road trip.

San Jose is coming off a 2-1 defeat at Columbus on Saturday. Evgeni Nabokov stopped 16 of 18 shots one game after being pulled following a poor effort at Detroit in which he allowed four goals on 30 shots in a 5-1 loss on Friday.

Nabokov, though, had a 26-save shutout in his last start at Dallas on March 4 in a 4-0 victory.

San Jose placed forward Ryane Clowe and defenseman Rob Davison (finger) on injured reserve on Sunday and recalled forwards Devin Setoguchi and Lukas Kaspar from its AHL affiliate in Worcester.

Clowe, who has three goals and three assists in 11 games, assisted on Joe Thornton's goal in Saturday's loss before being diagnosed with a knee injury afterward. There is no timetable for his return.

Setoguchi, the No. 8 overall draft pick in 2005, could make his NHL debut Monday after an ankle injury forced him back to the minors following training camp.

Jeremy Roenick, who has three goals for the Sharks, is two shy of becoming the third American to reach 500 and 40th in NHL history. His 1,175 points trail only Modano and Housley, and the 37-year-old had a hat trick against the Stars on Dec. 30 while playing for the Phoenix Coyotes last season.

by: Staff Writers - Email Us

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