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2012 NHL Standings: Dallas Stars Fighting For Playoff Life

At one point in the season, and it wasn't long ago, the Dallas Stars were the hottest team in the NHL and appeared as if they were primed to make a run at the postseason.

The Stars had won 10 out of 11 games from late-February to mid-March and were racking points like crazy, but the club has taken a downward slide since then by losing six of their last nine contests.

On Tuesday, Dallas fights for its playoff livelihood against the San Jose Sharks at American Airlines Center. This, essentially is the playoffs as the Stars enter the "win or go home" type of scenarios. Dallas holds the ninth seed in the Western Conference playoff race, with the Sharks just a point ahead of them at the eight seed. One of those two teams will be the lone group in the Pacific Division that will not see any playoff action this season.

Here is a look at the NHL Standings.

Read more about the Stars at Defending Big D and for more on the Sharks, go to Fear the Fin.

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