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1st Intermission Report: Stars 1 - Coyotes 1

In a reversal from the previous two games, the Stars actually got off to a quick start in this game. Loui Eriksson scored the first goal of the game just three minutes into the period on a shot that Mike Smith probably should have stopped (but it's one that Stars fans will not be complaining about).

Eriksson took a pass from Michael Ryder, skated into the zone pretty easily and wristed a low shot that got by Smith.

The lead wouldn't last very long though as the Phoenix Coyotes scored just three minutes later on a blast from the slot by Lauri Korpikoski. He set up in an area above the slot with no defenders around him and Ray Whitney from him from the boards. The shot might have been tipped by Michael Ryder, but nevertheless it ended up dipping under Kari Lehtonen. Momentum lost and game tied.

The Stars went on the penalty kill twice this period and were able to stop the Coyotes each time. The problem with those penalties though is that Dallas has now gone eight periods without a power play. That's nearly three games in which Dallas has no power plays while the opponent has been on the advantage nine times.

It was a pretty even period with each team controlling play for different times, though the Coyotes were probably better. The Stars just couldn't gather much momentum as they had two power plays to kill and only got five shots on goal. The defensive coverage needs to be better. They can't allow free shooters anymore or this game will get out of hand.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.