The Stars might be able to use their Fathers’ Trip to perfection after a big victory Tuesday night.

Yes, Dallas was able to get a 3-1 win over the Phoenix Coyotes and draw within two points of a wild-card playoff spot in the Western Conference, but the Stars were far from perfect. That’s just the kind of conversation dads love in the car ride home — a teaching moment after a win.

With the Stars having to play Wednesday in San Jose, the timing is important.

“We’ll definitely feed them some information,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff of the fact the fathers get to ride with the sons on the plane to San Jose.

By out-chancing Phoenix and earning the victory, the Stars moved to 26-21-9 (61 points) and remained in 10th place in the West ahead of hard-charging Winnipeg. The Coyotes fell to 26-20-10 (62 points) with the loss and remained in ninth place in the West.

And while Vancouver remained in eighth place, clinging to the final wild-card playoff spot, the Canucks lost to Boston, 3-1. Vancouver (27-22-9, 63 points) has lost five in a row, and the Stars are 5-1-1 in their last seven. All of a sudden, the race for the postseason seems wide open as the Stars near the Olympic break.

“We knew it was a big game, and we wanted to play that way,” said Antoine Roussel, who had the game-winner.

Dallas plays at San Jose on Wednesday and then hosts the Coyotes on Saturday before the NHL shuts down for the Olympics. Making a statement before the break could definitely be important.

The Stars had a lot of great moments in the game, as they finished with a 40-28 advantage in shots on goal and forced former Stars goalie Mike Smith into several big glove saves.

However, they also had some glaring mistakes.

Maybe the biggest came in the second period when rookie Valeri Nichushkin appeared to have his teammates aligned for a line change and then just gave the puck away in the neutral zone. The Stars were caught flat-footed, and Antoine Vermette rushed in for a breakaway backhand and 1-0 lead on an unassisted goal.