Stars end difficult month with win over Flames

– Jamie Benn and the Dallas Stars were ready for some time off after a tough start to the new year. They go into the All-Star break coming off a needed victory.

Benn and Jason Spezza scored 80 seconds apart early in the second period, and the Stars held on for a 2-1 victory Monday night over the Calgary Flames, who came up empty on three consecutive power-play chances in the second period and two more after that stretch.

"It was a grind, but we got the job done. Things were going pretty good there until probably about halfway through the second, and a couple turnovers and three straight penalties and gave them momentum," Benn said.

The Stars won for only the third time in 11 games in January, closing out a 3-6-2 stretch after leading the Western Conference for much of the season.


•BRUINS SURGE LATE: Brett Connolly redirected Zdeno Chara's shot from the point with 1 minute, 54 seconds left, lifting the Bruins to a 3-2 victory over the host Flyers. Connolly tipped the wobbly shot and one-hopped the puck past Michel Neuvirth for his seventh goal of the season.

•QUICK 1-2 PUNCH: Justin Abdelkader and Danny DeKeyser scored 1:11 apart in the second period to lead the visiting Red Wings to a 4-2 victory over the Islanders. Brock Nelson and Mikhail Grabovski scored for New York.

•HAT TRICK PACES COLUMBUS: Cam Atkinson had his third career hat trick and Brandon Saad scored twice to help the host Blue Jackets beat the Canadiens 5-2 to end a three-game skid.

•RANGERS RALLY: J.T. Miller scored from in close after the Rangers squandered a two-goal third-period lead and New York came back to beat Buffalo 6-3 for its eighth consecutive victory over the Sabres.