St. Louis (29-25-9) at Dallas (28-22-12)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Dallas, TX
Temp: 43° F
  • Game info: 8:30 pm EST Thu Mar 4, 2010
  • TV: FSMW, FSSW
Preview | Box Score | Recap

David Backes(notes) and the St. Louis Blues look ready to make a push for the playoffs the way they came out of the Olympic break. The same can’t be said for the Dallas Stars.

The Blues look to win their season-high fifth straight Thursday night when they try to hand the Stars a second straight loss.

St. Louis (29-25-9) and Dallas (28-22-12) are both out of playoff position but took hope out of strong finishes before the Olympics. The Blues won three straight while the Stars were 3-0-1 in their last four.

The extended time off didn’t hurt St. Louis in maintaining its win streak with a 5-2 victory at Phoenix on Tuesday. Backes, a member of Team USA in Vancouver, had a goal and an assist.

“I think I definitely benefited from being on the ice during that seven- to 10-day stretch,” Backes said. “I felt really good out there.”

The Blues had 10 players on the scoresheet, with Paul Kariya(notes), Alexander Steen and Carlo Colaiacovo(notes) each having a pair of assists.

“When you get balanced scoring like that, teams can’t feel like they can shut down one unit and shut you down,” Backes said.

While the Blues picked up where they left off, the Stars turned in a listless effort in a 5-1 home loss to Los Angeles on Tuesday. Mike Ribeiro’s(notes) power-play goal in the third period was all the Stars mustered after falling behind 4-0.

“We could have done everything much better. We were just flat,” said Ribeiro, who has four goals in four games since missing 15 contests after being struck in the throat by a stick Jan. 6 against the Rangers.

It looked like Marty Turco’s(notes) momentum was gone after he allowed all five goals on 22 shots. Turco, who is in the last year of his contract and might not be re-signed, was 4-1-1 with a 1.15 goals-against average in his last six games before the break.

“You certainly can’t pin (the loss) on Marty,” coach Marc Crawford told the Stars’ official Web site. “He wasn’t as good as their guy, but at the same time, we can’t give up those low cycle walk chances that are tap-in goals.”

Turco is 2-5-1 with a 3.06 GAA in his last eight starts against the Blues. Dallas and St. Louis have split two meetings this season, with the Blues winning in a shootout.

Center T.J. Oshie(notes) has five points in his last four games against Dallas and has been very productive lately with 10 points in his last nine contests. Left wing Andy McDonald(notes) enters with a four-game point streak.

The Blues made a minor move when they acquired forward Matt D’Agostini(notes) from Montreal in exchange for prospect Aaron Palushaj(notes) in a trade announced late Tuesday. D’Agostini, who will join the team in Dallas, has two goals, two assists and 26 penalty minutes in 40 games this season.

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Thursday, Mar 4