The Red Wings had their longest winning streak of the season snapped on Tuesday evening, as they dropped a 4-3 regulation decision to visiting San Jose. Detroit, which leads the Central Division by 10 points over Nashville, had won five straight prior to that loss.
Dallas, meanwhile, watched its longest skid of the season grow to five games with Tuesday's 1-0 regulation loss against visiting New Jersey. All of the losses on the current swoon have come in regulation and the Stars have a dreadful 1-8-1 mark in February.
The five-game skid is the longest for Dallas since it dropped seven straight from March 17-30, 2009.
With 68 points, the Stars have dropped into a three-way tie for the ninth seed in the West and they are two points out of a playoff spot. Four teams are currently tied for the final four postseason berths in the conference.
Dallas has taken two of three from the Red Wings this season and can win the season series tonight. However, Detroit pounded the Stars, 7-3, when the clubs last met on Dec. 29 in Dallas.
The Stars have taken seven of nine overall in this series and three of their last four in Detroit.
Dallas is not expected to face the former longtime face of its franchise tonight, as Detroit forward Mike Modano is not expected to return from surgery on his right wrist until Saturday's game in Buffalo. Modano, who played the first 20 years of his career with the Stars franchise before signing with Detroit this summer, hasn't played since Nov. 26.
Red Wings forward Valtteri Filppula could also return from a sprained left MCL on Saturday.
Devin Setoguchi scored two goals, including the game-winning tally in the third period, to lead the Sharks to their 4-3 decision over Detroit on Tuesday.
Danny Cleary tallied twice for Detroit, while Jimmy Howard let in four goals on 43 shots. "They played well, we didn't play great at all," Cleary said. "We had some chances offensively, but I think defensively we were too loose."
Detroit has lost three of its last five home games and is 17-9-4 at Joe Louis Arena this season.
The Stars were stymied in Tuesday's setback by Johan Hedberg, who stopped all 19 shots he faced for his 17th career shutout in the 1-0 win over Dallas. Nick Palmieri tallied the game's lone goal with five-plus minutes to play in regulation for the Devils.
"We keep playing with that type of intensity and that type of commitment, and things will change for us," said Stars head coach Marc Crawford. "It's always the way it happens."
Kari Lehtonen made 22 saves for the Stars, who have lost seven straight on the road and are just 14-14-1 as the guest this season. Dallas last recorded a road win on Jan. 20 in Edmonton.
Dallas acquired defenseman Alex Goligoski from Pittsburgh earlier this week in the deal that sent James Neal and Matt Niskanen to the Steel City. Goligoski had one shot on net and four penalty minutes in his Stars debut on Tuesday.
Stars defenseman Nicklas Grossman is questionable for tonight with a hip injury, while forward Brad Richards is still out indefinitely with a concussion.