Greg Wyshynski

Wednesday's Three Stars: Buf's beauty; Conklin owns Detroit

Greg Wyshynski
Puck Daddy

No. 1 Star: Ty Conklin(notes), St. Louis Blues

View photo

.
Conklin's obviously comfortable at the Joe, where he was a backup goalie for the Detroit Red Wings last season. His 42 saves back-stopped a 1-0 win for the visiting Blues and were the most for a St. Louis goalie this season. He was especially good in the first and the third, as the Blues were outshot 28-9 to open and close the game. Brad Boyes's(notes) first-period goal was the game-winner. But ConkBlock was also helped by the zebras: Detroit saw a Brian Rafalski(notes) goal waved off in another "intent to blow" controversy for the Wings.

No. 2 Star: Dustin Byfuglien(notes), Chicago Blackhawks

With the Blackhawks and the visiting New York Rangers tied 1-1 in overtime, Byfuglien unleashed one of the best individual efforts for a goal we've seen this season. Here's the game-winner, his ninth of the season that gave the Blackhawks a 2-1 win and their first victory over the Rangers in four years:

No. 3 Star: Steve Mason(notes), Columbus Blue Jackets

The good news: Mason looked great and stopped 32 Florida Panthers shots in a 3-0 victory for the Blue Jackets. The sad news: The reigning Calder Trophy winner's first shutout of the season came on Dec. 10. Yikes. Hopefully with that weight lifted, Mason can continue to regain his form for Columbus.

Honorable mention: Dustin Brown's(notes) sneaky shot beat Evgeni Nabokov(notes) (23 saves) at 1:18 of overtime to give the Los Angeles Kings an emotional 5-4 victory at the San Jose Sharks. Brown hadn't scored a goal since Nov. 7; Anze Kopitar(notes) also broke his scoring drought with a second-period goal, having failed to score a goal since Nov. 9. Patrick Marleau(notes) scored his 20th for the Sharks. Terrific game. ... Ryan Miller(notes) gave credit to his teammates for helping to shut down the Washington Capitals, but he made 35 saves in the 3-0 win. Stick tap to Nathan Gerbe(notes) for scoring his first NHL goal. ... Andy Greene(notes) scored two goals and Marty Brodeur made 21 saves in the New Jersey Devils' 4-2 victory over Cam Ward(notes) (27 saves) and the Carolina Hurricanes. ... John Tavares's(notes) two power-play goals may grab the headlines up north, but the Toronto Maple Leafs grabbed the 3-2 victory over the New York Islanders thanks to Jason Blake's(notes) third-period game-winner. ... Zack Stortini(notes) didn't win his fight, but the Edmonton Oilers' enforcer had the Gordie Howe hat trick with a goal and an assist in his team's 3-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. ... The Minnesota Wild haven't lost to the Colorado Avalanche in four games this season, as Niklas Backstrom(notes) made 23 saves and Antti Miettinen(notes) scored the lone goal in a 1-0 victory. ... Miikka Kiprusoff(notes) made 24 saves and played brilliantly in a 3-1 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers, who have lost three of four.

Did you know?: The Capitals trailed after the first period for just the third time this season. (AP)

Dishonorable mention: Evander Kane(notes) was a healthy scratch for the Thrashers. ... The Red Wings were 0-for-6 on the power play; the Sharks were 1-for-7. ... Ryan Malone(notes) (lower body) and Steven Stamkos(notes) (upper body) both left their game against the Oilers; as Lightning Strikes wrote: "With Stamkos (17 goals) and Ryan Malone (16) out, the Lightning lost 45 percent of its offense."

View Comments