CALGARY, Alberta -- The Dallas Stars have come to Calgary banged up physically to face an opponent that, like them, is fragile emotionally.The Stars and Flames square off Thursday with each hoping the evening is the beginning of better times.Dallas is coming off an 8-2 pasting by the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday for its sixth loss in seven games. The Flames, meanwhile, have lost four of their past five.This is pretty much rock bottom, Stars captain Jamie Benn told the Dallas Morning News after the lopsided loss.We all have to look in the mirror and figure it out.The Stars continue a five-game road trip that began with an overtime loss to the Chicago Blackhawks and followed with a rout at the hands of the Jets that leaves them at 4-6-3 and in sixth place in the Central Division.The Flames are 5-8-1 and also sixth in the Pacific Division. They return from a four-game road trip that saw them drop three contests and get outscored 16-5.One big excuse for the Stars woes is injuries and illnesses. Against Winnipeg they were missing six forwards, including Jason Spezza, who has missed two games with a lower body injury but could return against Calgary. Patrick Sharp, Ales Hemsky, Jiri Hudler, Mattias Janmark and Cody Eakin are also sidelined.Spezza skated in Winnipeg Tuesday morning but head coach Lindy Ruff opted to keep him out for at least one more night.He skated but hes not close to 100 percent, Ruff told the Dallas Morning News. But hes back on the ice, which is a good sign.Things havent been much better lately for Calgary under new coach Glen Gulutzen, who is already occupying a hot seat after only one month on the job in place of the fired Bob Hartley.The rough start prompted Flames president Brian Burke to agree to a rare radio interview on Tuesday. Known in the past for his high profile in the media, Burke has remained somewhat in the background in Calgary the past two seasons. That changed this week when he offered his assessment of the current state of affairs.Our top guys are not getting it done. Im not one for calling players out, but our top guys are not playing up to their level. Its that simple, he said.Those top guys are winger Johnny Gaudreau and his center Sean Monahan, who both signed lucrative six-year contracts prior to 2016-17 but have thus far not delivered the goods. Gaudreau has two goals, eight points and a minus-11 rating through 14 games while Monahan has four goals, one lone assist and is a minus-10.Right now were not good enough, Monahan told the Flames website. Me and Johnny know that. Weve got to find a way to help this team produce offence. I mean, when you play big minutes, get opportunities on the power play and stuff like that, youve got to find a way to get it done. Todd Helton Jersey . 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COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State coach Kevin McGuff said his team accomplished what it set out to do Saturday in a blowout win over less-talented NIU Brooklyn: The Buckeyes improved.Sierra Calhoun scored 22 points and Kelsey Mitchell added 21 as No. 7 Ohio State routed the Northeast Conference team 113-54.Obviously, today was going to be more about us, and how we handled this game and this situation, McGuff said. Because were really trying to focus on ourselves and getting better, and we did that. If we were going make it about the score or something like that, then we were going to get distracted and caught up in some things that we shouldnt be doing.The more aggressive Buckeyes had 18 steals and with a size advantage inside, outrebounded the Blackbirds 56 to 30.Makayla Waterman added 15 points and nine rebounds for Ohio State, and Kiara Lewis had 12 points. Tori McCoy had nine points and 12 rebounds.I think we played good as a team, Calhoun said. I felt like the ball was moving a lot more than it normally does. I feel like were getting better as a team gradually as the games go on.Drew Winter led LIU Brooklyn with 12 points, and Brianna Farris Drew had 10. The Blackbirds are winless in their first three starts.Mitchell, an All-American and arguably the Big Tens best player, was her usual hot-shooting self, going 8 for 11 from the floor, hitting four 3-pointers and dishing five assists.With a front-court size advantage of a couple inches, Ohio State (3-1) dominated under the basket, logging 62 points in the paint compared with zero by the Blackbirds. Ohio State shot 50.4 percent from the floor, while LIU Brooklyn made just 31.5 percent of its shots.Ohio States 11-0 run to begin the game set the tone. The Buckeyes led 32-8 after the first period on the strengthh of Duke transfer Calhouns 5 for 5 shooting from beyond the arc.dddddddddddd. The Blackbirds played better in the second period but still trailed 59-20 at the half. Ohio State led by 53 after three quarters.My team did a great job of finding me after they saw I was hitting all those 3s, Calhoun said. Once that first shot goes in your confidence goes up, and I just kept shooting.LIU Brooklyn coach Stephanie Oliver said there were bright spots for her team.It prepared us for our conference, she said. Look, we can score 54 points on a good basketball team. Our out-of-bounds plays work, our offense works. If we can execute against them and get better against them, its really going to help us down the line.BIG PICTURELIU Brooklyn: After their third straight loss by double-digits to open the season, the Blackbirds have much room for improvement.Ohio State: The Buckeyes lighter preconference schedule continues, giving them a chance to work out the bugs before the tougher games begin. They did what they were supposed to do against a less-talented team.Playing teams like this helps us out executing plays, doing the little things, making nice passes, posting up well, McCoy said. It was a learning experience for all of us.INJURY REPORTOhio State forward Stephanie Mavunga got the day off because of what McGuff described as general soreness.POLL IMPLICATIONSOhio State likely will stay put at or around No. 7.UP NEXTLIU Brooklyn: Plays University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Friday night at the TD Bank Classic in Burlington, Vermont.Ohio State: Travels to Fort Myers to play Florida Gulf Coast.---Follow Mitch Stacy at http://twitter.com/mitchstacy Discount NFL Jerseys Cheap Stitched Jerseys Disocunt Football Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys China NFL Jerseys From China Wholesale Stitched Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Store ' ' '