While Marty Turco has struggled this season, the Dallas goaltender usually performs well against his team’s next opponent.
Turco and the Stars (16-16-5) continue their four-game road trip Sunday in Vancouver (21-15-4).
In 20 meetings with the Canucks, Turco is 15-4-1 with a 1.75 goals-against average. He has also gone 6-2-1 at GM Place with a 2.25 GAA, and a good game there from Turco could prove key as each of last eight meetings between the teams have been decided by one goal.
However, the usually reliable netminder hasn’t been at his best this season, and that was evident again in Dallas’ 4-1 loss to Edmonton on Saturday.
Turco allowed three goals in the first 27:23, putting the Stars in an early 3-0 hole.
“To be a good team, we have to bring consistency,” Dallas coach Dave Tippett said on the team’s official Web site. “This was a slap in the face to our team. We gave up two soft goals early, and you end up chasing the game. There was not enough push from our side tonight.”
It also marked the 14th time this season Turco has allowed four or more goals, and his 3.22 GAA is nearly a full goal higher than his career average. Last season, he allowed four or more goals in 11 games and finished with a 2.31 GAA while helping Dallas reach the Western Conference finals.
While Turco’s struggles continued, the Stars have relied on their offense for a 5-2-1 record in their last eight. Dallas has scored 29 goals in that span, with Loui Eriksson and rookie James Neal leading the way.
Neal scored the Stars’ lone goal on Saturday for his sixth in the past seven games and 12th overall. Eriksson, the team leader with 20 goals, has scored eight times in the last eight contests.
Brad Richards, who has a team-leading 34 points, has four goals and nine assists in the last eight games.
The Canucks haven’t found much traction of late, alternating wins and losses in their past four games and going 2-3-1 over their last six - including Friday’s 4-3 shootout loss in Atlanta.
Recently acquired goalie Jason LaBarbera allowed two goals in four shootout attempts for his first loss in two starts since coming over in a trade with Los Angeles on Wednesday.
“My success rate in the shootout hasn’t been very good,” said LaBarbera, who dropped to 1-1-0 with the Canucks and 4-5 in shootouts. “I would of liked to come up with one more save.”
If he gets another start, LaBarbera will face a team he has a 4-2-0 record against, despite a 3.00 GAA. LaBarbera has allowed 10 goals in his last three starts against Dallas.
While the Canucks have averaged just 2.0 goals over the last six games, the Sedin twins have remained consistent offensively. They accounted for all three goals in Friday’s game and each tied a season high with three points.
Daniel Sedin, who leads Vancouver with 19 goals and 41 points, had a goal and two assists against Atlanta, and has two goals and four assists over the last four games.
Henrik Sedin, who registered two goals and an assist on Friday, has scored three times with four assists during a four-game point streak.
The Stars have won two of the past three meetings with the Canucks, but are 1-2-1 in their last four games in Vancouver.