Jakub Vrana scored a career-best four goals and Thomas Greiss made 43 saves as the Detroit Red Wings delivered a 7-3 rout of the visiting Dallas Stars on Thursday.
The Red Wings (17-25-7, 41 points) moved two points ahead of the last-place Columbus Blue Jackets in the Central Division.
A victory would have lifted Dallas (19-15-12, 50 points) into a fourth-place tie with Nashville in the battle for a playoff position in the Central, but the Stars instead saw their four-game win streak come to an end. The Stars suffered their first regulation loss in nine games (6-1-2).
The Stars outshot the Red Wings by a 46-23 margin, but Greiss stopped 43 of 46 shots for his latest big performance in net. The Detroit goalie has a .937 save percentage over his last 10 games.
Vrana scored his second hat trick in five NHL seasons, and then made it a career night with one final marker at 15:48 of the third period. The forward has five goals in four games since being acquired along with Richard Panik and two draft picks in a trade from the Washington Capitals in exchange for Anthony Mantha on April 12.
Panik also scored on Thursday, giving Detroit a 3-0 lead into the first intermission by capitalizing on a misplay by Stars goalie Anton Khudobin with 11 seconds remaining in the opening period.
Luke Glendening and Sam Gagner scored the Red Wings' other goals, with Gagner also adding an assist. Danny DeKeyser, Gustav Lindstrom and Filip Zadina each had two assists.
Radek Faksa and Denis Gurianov scored power-play goals for Dallas, and Joe Pavelski added his 20th goal of the season. Tanner Kero contributed two assists.
Jake Oettinger stopped 10 of 13 shots in relief of Khudobin, who was removed during the first intermission after allowing three goals on nine shots.
Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin didn't play due to an upper-body injury.
The Stars are 5-2-0 against the Red Wings this season. The two teams conclude their regular-season series in Detroit on Saturday.
--Field Level Media