Dallas coach Ken Hitchcock could see the improved play in his Stars, but positive results had been elusive.
The Stars had lost consecutive games, been shut out in two of their last four and late Thursday night against the Kings were stuck in a scoreless game.
But then Tyler Seguin finally broke through with a goal with 8:27 remaining and Dallas beat Los Angeles 2-0 in a matchup of teams fighting for a Western Conference playoff spot.
But the second period brought a quick reversal, with Dallas putting constant pressure on goalie Jonathan Quick as Los Angeles’ offense all but disappeared.
Still, the game was scoreless as Seguin prepared to take a faceoff in the Kings end a little more than midway through the third.
“Right before the faceoff, Seguin came back to me and said, `Look for my stick if I get it to you,” Pateryn said. “He got it back to me and I basically looked him right in the eyes and shot it right for his stick.”
Connor made it 3-0 with a power play goal with 1:29 left in the first, chipping in a rebound off of a Wheeler shot. Connor has scored four goals in his last three games.
“We turned a couple of (pucks) over early and then one of our offensive lines got in the penalty box and he (Hellebuyck) made some saves on that PK that was good and gave us time to get our legs going,” Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice said.
Laine extended his goals streak to four games, beating Allen clean from the right circle at 6:04 of the second period.
“I thought we came out with good jump,” Blues forward Alexander Steen said. “We let in a couple of goals and dug ourselves a hole. I think we were a little spread out against a solid team. They play with good foundation to their game and we got extremely spread out at times during the game.”
Hellebuyck made several key saves early as the Blues had the first seven shots of the game. Hellebuyck also made tough saves on Brayden Schenn and Steen during a power play late in the second.