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NHL Three Stars: Fontaine nets first trick; Schneider, Halak record shutouts

Sean Leahy
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No. 1 Star: Justin Fontaine, Minnesota Wild

Fontaine became the first Wild rookie to ever notch a hat trick as Minnesota downed the Phoenix Coyotes 4-1 for their fourth win in a row. The trick was also their second in three games. Niklas Backstrom stopped 39 shots as the Wild jumped over the Coyotes for the eighth spot in the Western Conference.

No. 2 Stars: Cory Schneider, New Jersey Devils and Jaroslav Halak, St. Louis Blues

Michael Ryder's second period goal was enough for the Devils to edge the Dallas Stars 1-0. Schneider made 26 saves for his third shutout of the season and 12th of his career. The win snapped a three-game losing skid for New Jersey.

Halak needed 33 saves for his 28th career shutout and third of this season as the St. Louis Blues won their seventh straight with a 5-0 shutout of the Calgary Flames. Five different Blues scored as St. Louis extended their points streak to 10 games.

No. 3 Star: Jordan Staal, Carolina Hurricanes

Staal scored his first shorthanded goal in almost two years and added a trio of assists for a four-point night as the Hurricanes routed the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-1. Jeff Skinner scored his 17th goal in his last 17 games as Carolina won their fifth in a row.

Honorable Mention: After hitting six posts during the game, the Florida Panthers hit one more in the shootout, but this one worked in their favor. Brad Boyes, who also scored in regulation, saw his shot in the third round bank off the post and off Jhonas Enroth to give the Panthers a 2-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres:

A four-goal second period helped power the Anaheim Ducks over the Nashville Predators 4-3. Ryan Getzlaf scored twice and assisted on another, while Teemu Selanne scored his 109th career game-winning goal, tying him with Brendan Shanahan for fourth all-time. Anaheim has now won five straight and 15 of 16 ... Eric Fehr netted two goals during a 4-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, with his second coming with 51.5 seconds left to snap a 3-3 tie. Philipp Grubauer made 33 saves or his sixth win, including this stunning split denial on Ondrej Palat:

Joe Pavelski scored a pair of goals and Joe Thornton chipped in two assists as the San Jose Sharks beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-1. Antti Niemi made 24 saves for his 23rd win of the season. San Jose has won nine straight in the regular season over Detroit ... Nifty little backhand goal from Tomas Tatar here:

The Los Angeles Kings built up a 3-0 lead by early in the second period, knocking Tuukka Rask from the game, and hung on for a 4-2 win over the Boston Bruins. Justin Williams had a power play goal and an assist in his 800th NHL game. Jonathan Quick made 20 saves for his second win since returning from injury.

Did You Know? The Lightning and Capitals had to switches sides at the 10-minute mark of each period due to poor crease conditions at one end of the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

Dishonorable Mention: Jonathan Huberdeau looked have scored a shootout goal, but officials determined he pushed Enroth's pad to put the puck over the goal line. The play was not reviewable ... Toronto has lost their three games since the Winter Classic by a combined margin of 18-5 ... Calgary has been shutout in five of their last seven games.

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