Wings After Fifth Straight
Dallas, TX - There's been little stopping the Detroit Red Wings of late.
Facing one of the league's worst defenses, Detroit hopes to win its fifth straight game Friday night when it faces the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center.
Oddsmakers from Online Sportsbook Sportsbook.com have made the Red Wings –160 money line favorites for Friday’s game against the Stars. Current NHL Public Betting Information shows that 77% of more than 195 bets for this game have been placed on the Red Wings -160.
The Red Wings come into a rematch of last year's Western Conference finals on a four-game winning streak while Dallas has dropped two of its last three.
This matchups pits the Stars, who surrenders 3.56 goals per game, against Detroit, which averages 3.56 goals. Dallas has also given up five goals in two of the last three games, while the Red Wings have scored 16 goals in that same span.
Detroit has six players with 21 points or more, led by Marian Hossa's 29. With 15 goals, Hossa also leads a group of four Red Wings who have at least 11 goals.
Hossa has scored four times in the last six games, and Jiri Hudler has five goals in that span. Daniel Cleary also has three consecutive multipoint games.
The Red Wings' potent offense has helped compensate for shaky goaltending. While scoring 16 in the last three games, Detroit has also given up 12 goals. Chris Osgood and Ty Conklin have allowed three or more in eight of the last 10.
Conklin made a second straight start in Wednesday's 4-3 overtime victory over Calgary but put his team in a 3-1 hole with 11:09 left. The Red Wings rallied with a pair of goals in the next 4:52 and Nicklas Lidstrom scored 3:50 into overtime.
"Sometimes when you're skilled, you get so caught up in your skill that you forget to compete," coach Mike Babcock said.
Conklin also allowed Chicago to take a 4-2 lead after two periods Saturday before Detroit came back for a 5-4 shootout win.
Despite his struggles, Conklin is expected to start Friday. Conklin has made four career starts against the Stars, going 1-1-0 with a 2.88 goals-against average.
If there's a team that knows about shaky goaltending, it's Dallas. Marty Turco is suffering through the worst season of his career with a 9-12-4 record and an uncharacteristic 3.41 GAA - a number substantially higher than his lifetime 2.23 mark.
If he makes a 17th consecutive start, Turco will try to improve on his 4-11-0 mark in the last 16 games against Detroit, including last seasons' playoffs.
In a 5-3 loss to Phoenix on Wednesday, Turco allowed the Coyotes to tie the game at 3 with four seconds left in the second period, then gave up two more in the third.
"It's frustrating," defenseman Stephane Robidas told the team's official Web site. "It's consistency. That's what we need and that's what we lack and that's why we're where we're at in the standings."
Unlike Detroit's goalies, Turco doesn't have the luxury of a high-powered offense to bail him out.
While Detroit has six players with 21 points or more, that same total leads the Stars as Mike Modano and Brad Richards each have 21. Dallas has averaged 2.74 goals this season and scored two or fewer in seven of its last 14.
Including last year's postseason, the Red Wings are 11-3-1 in their last 15 games with the Stars, winning five of the last seven at Dallas.
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Posted: 12/12/08 12:16 AM ET