Stars' Crawford to reach grand milestone

When the puck is dropped for the opening faceoff tonight, it will be the 1,000th regular-season game that Marc Crawford has coached in the NHL.He will become the 15th coach in NHL history to do that.

"It's nice to do," Crawford said this week. "It means I've been around awhile."

Crawford has coached in Colorado, Vancouver, Los Angeles and now Dallas. He won a Stanley Cup in Colorado in 1996.

"I think he's been terrific here," general manager Joe Nieuwendyk said after Thursday's practice. "The players didn't know what to expect from him, and I think that's a good thing. Now I think they know he's all about accountability, being consistent and work ethic."

So far, it's difficult to argue with the results. The Stars needed to get off to a good start and they've done that. They are 6-2-4 with 16 points in their first 12 games. That puts them sixth in the Western Conference going into Friday's game with Florida.