for this game

Modano, Barnes, Jokinen lead Stars over Predators

Apr 1, 2007 - 5:54 AM
NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Ticker) -- As the Dallas Stars inched higher in the standings, Mike Modano moved closer to immortality.

Modano scored a goal and set up another, and Stu Barnes and Jussi Jokinen added a tally and an assist as the Stars extended their winning streak to four games with a 4-2 triumph over the slumping Nashville Predators.

Jeff Halpern also scored and Marty Turco made 24 saves for Dallas (48-24-6), which moved ahead of idle San Jose (48-26-4) for fifth place in the Western Conference.

"It comes down to execution and sticking with the game plan," Turco said of the win. "It is special hockey this time of year. We're happy with the outcome, but we're really pleased with the effort and how we got it done. ... The concern is playing as hard as we can and building this machine toward the playoffs and whomever it is we play in the first round."

The Stars also climbed within three points of the fourth-place Predators (49-23-7), who remained one behind the Detroit Red Wings (47-19-12) and Anaheim Ducks (47-20-12) for the top spot in the West.

"After the game against Detroit (on Thursday), we wanted to respond in the right way," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "I'm very disappointed with the way we came out tonight. We got exactly what we deserved today."

Entering 11 points shy of becoming the highest-scoring American-born player in NHL history, Modano set up Jokinen for a tally 4:44 into the contest as Dallas took an early 2-0 lead.

"We had some good legs at the start, and that gave us a little bit of a relief factor that we were involved in the game," Modano said. "We knew that it was going to be a little bit hostile, and that gave us more focus. Being on the road, in that type of environment, we really rose to the occasion."

Modano was referring to Dallas' return to Nashville Arena, where Predators right wing Jordin Tootoo gave Stars defenseman Stephane Robidas a concussion during a sneak attack on March 17 and received a five-game suspension for his effort. In this one, Tootoo received three minor penalties, including two for roughing.

"The game as a little bit revved up, but we had good discipline," Modano said.

"We came out and knew it was going to be a hostile environment," Dallas coach Dave Tippett added. "But that's what makes the game fun for a visiting team coming in here."

After rookie Alexander Radulov drew Nashville within 3-2 in the second session, the Michigan native netted his 21st goal of the season midway through the third, giving him 1,224 career points.

A native of Minnesota, Phil Housley is the all-time leading scorer among U.S.-born players with 1,232 points.

"I thought Modano was excellent in the game," Tippett said. "He knew it was going to be a tough sledding coming in here, and he played a whale of a game for us."

Defenseman Greg Zanon tallied and Tomas Vokoun turned aside 31 shots for the Predators, who have lost six of their last nine games.

"They were just better than us in every area," Vokoun said. "They were just quicker to the pucks. They were more disciplined and they played better defense."

"As you get closer to the playoffs, teams start to buckle down and play better defensively," Nashville's Jason Arnott added. "They are a great team and they play really well with the puck. ... We played better in the second (period), but we tailed off in the third, and that was it."

It took the Stars just over two minutes to grab the lead, as Halpern watched Barnes' shot from the right faceoff circle go off his skate and into the net for a 1-0 lead. The play was reviewed by video officials, but Halpern ultimately was awarded his eighth goal of the season.

Jokinen doubled the advantage less than three minutes later, beating Vokoun with a wrist shot from the slot after the netminder deflected Modano's pass attempt from the left corner.

Zanon halved the deficit at 6:25, when Turco failed to stop his shot from the right point. But Barnes restored Dallas' two-goal lead with 6:40 to go in the session by tipping defenseman Mattias Norstrom's slap shot from the left point past Vokoun.

"We gave up three goals in the first period. We haven't done that since Opening Night, I believe," Trotz said. "When you dig a hole like that against a team that plays as well defensively as Dallas, that's a big hill. We lost the game in the first period. We didn't engage until it was 3-1."

The Predators took advantage of a bad clearing attempt by defenseman Sergei Zubov in the middle session, as Radulov converted from alone on the right side of the net with 6:07 left. But Modano buried a loose puck from below the left circle at 10:31 of the third to extinguish any comeback hopes for Nashville.

"We're struggling as of late as a group," Predators left wing Paul Kariya said. "Everyone has to pick it up."








  • ------------------------------------
    Dallas
    3 0 1 --4
    Nashville 1 1 0 --2
    ------------------------------------

    FIRST PERIOD -- Scoring: 1, Dallas, Jeff Halpern 8 (Stu Barnes, Niklas
    Hagman), 2:01. 2, Dallas, Jussi Jokinen 14 (Mike Modano, Jere
    Lehtinen), 4:44. 3, Nashville, Greg Zanon 3 (Unassisted), 6:25. 4,
    Dallas, Stu Barnes 12 (Mattias Norstrom), 13:21. Penalties:

    Mar 31 10:35 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 4
    NASHVILLE 2
    3RD PRD: DAL - MIKE MODANO 21 (JUSSI JOKINEN, ANTTI MIETTINEN) 10:31

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 10:16 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 3 0 3
    NASHVILLE 1 1 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JEFF HALPERN 8 (STU BARNES, NIKLAS HAGMAN) 2:01
    DAL - JUSSI JOKINEN 14 (MIKE MODANO, JERE LEHTINEN) 4:44
    NAS - GREG ZANON 3 (UNASSISTED) 6:25
    DAL - STU BARNES 12 (MATTIAS NORSTROM) 13:21
    2ND PRD: NA

    Mar 31 9:41 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 3
    NASHVILLE 2
    2ND PRD: NAS - ALEXANDER RADULOV 17 (DARCY HORDICHUK, DAN HAMHUIS)
    13:53

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 9:31 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 3 3
    NASHVILLE 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JEFF HALPERN 8 (STU BARNES, NIKLAS HAGMAN) 2:01
    DAL - JUSSI JOKINEN 14 (MIKE MODANO, JERE LEHTINEN) 4:44
    NAS - GREG ZANON 3 (UNASSISTED) 6:25
    DAL - STU BARNES 12 (MATTIAS NORSTROM) 13:21
    SHOTS ON GO

    Mar 31 8:54 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 3
    NASHVILLE 1
    1ST PRD: DAL - STU BARNES 12 (MATTIAS NORSTROM) 13:21

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 8:54 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DALLAS 2 2
    NASHVILLE 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DAL - JEFF HALPERN 8 (STU BARNES, NIKLAS HAGMAN) 2:01
    DAL - JUSSI JOKINEN 14 (MIKE MODANO, JERE LEHTINEN) 4:44
    NAS - GREG ZANON 3 (UNASSISTED) 6:25
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- ---

    Mar 31 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 2
    NASHVILLE 1
    1ST PRD: NAS - GREG ZANON 3 (UNASSISTED) 6:25

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 8:22 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 2
    NASHVILLE 0
    1ST PRD: DAL - JUSSI JOKINEN 14 (MIKE MODANO, JERE LEHTINEN) 4:44

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 8:19 PM


  • NHL
    DALLAS 1
    NASHVILLE 0
    1ST PRD: DAL - JEFF HALPERN 8 (STU BARNES, NIKLAS HAGMAN) 2:01

    Stars vs. PredatorsMar 31 8:15 PM