The St. Louis Blues peppered Antti Niemi with 45 shots; alas, none of them were by Joe Pavelski. The Sharks forward tallied two goals and added an assist in San Jose's 5-3 victory over the Blues. He tallied a power-play goal in the first period after picking up the primary assist on Torrey Mitchell's goal to help give the Sharks a 3-0 lead in the first 7:41 of the game. Pavelski was originally credited with a hat trick, but lobbied after the game to have the Sharks' second goal credited to Patrick Marleau, giving up his first NHL trick.
No. 2 Star: Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks
The Ducks and Los Angeles Kings battled in a game with playoff intensity, with Anaheim desperately needing points to keep pace in the Western Conference. Perry got them the extra point in overtime: Beating Jonathan Quick with a tricky shot off an odd-man rush in the Ducks' 2-1 victory. He also led all players with 31 shifts in the game.
No. 3 Star: Rick Nash, Columbus Blue Jackets
He didn't factor into the game-winner, which was an unassisted goal by Antoine Vermette, but Nash had a hand in every other goal during the Jackets' 5-4 win at the Minnesota Wild. He opened the game with his 30th goal of the season, assisted on Kris Russell's second-period goal and Jan Hejda's third-period tally, and then scored No. 31 at 13:40 of the third. They were his first goals since Feb. 22. Antti Miettinen and Pierre-Marc Bouchard scored in the third to earn the Wild a charity point.
Honorable mention: Mark Mancari had a goal and two assists, Tyler Myers had three helpers and Nathan Gerbe scored a hard-working goal in the second period to spark an 8-2 rout by the Buffalo Sabres over the Atlanta Thrashers. Ryan Miller made 28 saves and stopped an Evander Kane penalty shot in winning his 30th game for the sixth straight season. … Youth was served in the Toronto Maple Leafs' impressive 5-2 victory over the Boston Bruins, as Luke Schenn, Keith Aulie and Nasem Kadri (his first NHL goal) were among the scorers. James Reimer made 35 saves. … The Ottawa Senators rallied with two third-period goals and then won it in overtime on a Jason Spezza breakaway, 3-2, over the Tampa Bay Lightning, who are on a 2-4-4 skid. … Rick DiPietro returned for the New York Islanders, stopping 29 shots and two more in the shootout during the Isles' 4-3 win at the Florida Panthers. Michael Grabner scored his 30th of the season, shorthanded. Evgeny Dadonov scored two goals for Florida. … The Philadelphia Flyers and Dallas Stars battled in a six-round shootout, with Ville Leino's goal providing the difference in the Flyers' 3-2 victory. Stephane Robidas scored in the third to tie it for Dallas. Jeff Carter tallied his 33rd in the first for Philly, who clinched a playoff berth. … Nashville Predators youngsters Blake Geoffrion and Jonathon Blum scored goals and Pekka Rinne made 39 saves in their 3-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings, who played without Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen. … The Sharks were without head coach Todd McLellan, who missed the game to attend a funeral. … Ryan Stoa's shootout goal and Brain Elliott's 31-save performance gave the Colorado Avalanche a 3-2 win at the Edmonton Oilers. Matt Duchene had a goal and an assist. … Derek Dorsett was given the instigator and a misconduct for this fight with Brad Staubitz, but earned them for sticking up for a teammate:
Did you know? Referee Dennis Larue was honored before the Sharks game for working his 1,000th regular-season game as an official. (AP)
Dishonorable mention: Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask replaced starter Tim Thomas in the second period but didn't return for the third after throwing a temper tantrum at his defense on the lone goal he surrendered. … Ondrej Pavelec was pulled after giving up three goals on 11 shots. His replacement, Chris Mason gave up five goals on 17 shots. … Jaroslav Halak was pulled after giving up three goals on 10 shots. … Defenseman Nicklas Grossman suffered a lower body injury and fellow D-man Karlis Skrastins left the game after two periods, as Dallas skated four defensemen in the third and OT. … Finally, rookie sensation Logan Couture had to be helped to the dressing room with a right leg injury for the Sharks. He crashed into the boards behind the St. Louis net in the second period and remained on the ice until two teammates assisted him. Couture tweeted about the injury after the game.
- San Jose Sharks
- Joe Pavelski