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Sean Leahy

Monday's Three Stars: Brodeur ties Sawchuk; goalies rule night

Sean Leahy
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No. 1 Star: Martin Brodeur(notes), New Jersey Devils

While shutting out the Buffalo Sabres 3-0, Brodeur tied Terry Sawchuk with his 103rd career shutout. Stopping 22 shots in the process, the Devils goaltender won his 18th game of the season as New Jersey continued their success on the road. The next active goalie behind Brodeur is Detroit's Chris Osgood(notes) who is 53 shutouts away. Brodeur's next record to break is most games played by a goaltender, currently held by Patrick Roy. As it stands, he's five games away from breaking that mark.

No. 2 Star: Peter Budaj(notes), Colorado Avalanche

With his best effort of the season, Budaj denied 35 St. Louis shots, winning his third game and keeping the Blues scoreless for his first shutout of the season. The win gave Budaj 84 career victories for the Avalanche, tying him with Stephane Fiset for fourth place on the franchise's all-time wins list.

No. 3 Star: Semyon Varlamov(notes), Washington Capitals

Improving his credentials for a run at the Calder Trophy, the Capitals rookie goaltender made 26 saves to improve his record to 12-1-2. Washington won their sixth game in a row and put them past the San Jose Sharks for 44 points, most in the NHL. The Sharks and Capitals remain the League's only two teams with over 100 goals scored. Varlamov leads all rookie goaltenders in wins save-percentage and shutouts.

Honorable mention: In a matchup of a team 9-2-1 away from home (Atlanta) and a team 2-7-3 at home (Toronto), the Maple Leafs put up five goals in the second period in a 5-2 victory. Alexei Ponikarovsky(notes) led the way with two goals and assists while Vesa Toskala(notes) made 22 saves for his first win since November 21st ... Alex Ovechkin(notes) made his return from suspension/injury scoring his 19th and 20th goals of the season as Washington blanked Tampa Bay 3-0. Tomas Fleischmann(notes) had two assists giving him five points in his last three games ... Dominic Moore's(notes) two goals weren't enough for Florida as they fell 3-2 in a shootout to Edmonton. Shawn Horcoff(notes) scored once in regulation and once in the shootout ... Manny Legace(notes) improved his career record against Pittsburgh to 4-0-0 after Carolina topped the Penguins 3-2. The Hurricanes earned their first road victory of the season as Ray Whitney(notes) tallied the eventual game-winner early in the second period ... Milestones on the evening included Lee Stempniak(notes) and Georges Laraque(notes) notching their 100th career assists, Darcy Tucker(notes) playing in his 900th game while Radek Dvorak(notes) played in his 1000th ... Colorado's Chris Stewart(notes) continued his hot streak scoring twice and adding an assist as the Avalanche blanked St. Louis 4-0. Stewart now has 13 points in his last nine games. Wojtek Wolski(notes) assisted on three of Colorado's four goals and extended his points streak to seven games ... Ilya Bryzgalov's(notes) 28 saves frustrated Minnesota as Phoenix triumphed 2-0. The Coyotes netminder has won his last five starts and allowed two goals or less in his last six games. Bryzgalov now leads NHL goaltenders in shutouts with four. Taylor Pyatt(notes) now has a goal in each of his last three games ... Kings goalie Jonathan Quick stopped 26 Calgary shots for his fourth win in his last five starts ... Not the prettiest goal of the night, but Danny Briere(notes) certainly gets a gold star for best individual effort:

Did you know?: The Coyotes have killed their last 19 penalties and 39 of the last 42. (AP)

Dishonorable mention: When he's on, he's fantastic. When he's off, like tonight, it's not pretty for Ondrej Pavelec(notes). Toronto chased the Atlanta goaltender after scoring five times in the second period on 22 shots ... Bruce Boudreau extended his winning streak against the Lightning to 12 games and Tampa has failed to beat the Capitals since November 16th, 2007 ... In their second game under new head coach Peter Laviolette, the Philadelphia Flyers could only muster 15 shots on Carey Price(notes) in a 3-1 loss to Montreal.

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