NHL Three Stars: Sobotka shines in return; Leafs ends Kings’ streak

We don't talk enough about how terrifying Stinger is. I mean, seriously, how is Alex Stalock supposed to focus with this chartreuse hell hornet in his periphery?

No. 1 Star: Vladimir Sobotka, St. Louis Blues

In his return to the lineup after breaking his kneecap on January 31, Sobotka made a major impact for the Blues, scoring once and adding an assist on two others in a 6-2 rout of the Edmonton Oilers. Here's his lovely goal, courtesy Vladimir Tarasenko, T.J. Oshie, and the brutal Oiler defence:

No. 2 Star: Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks

Marleau scored twice as the Sharks edged the Columbus Blue Jackets, 4-3, in a shootout.

No. 3 Star: Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning

Stamkos scored his first goal since returning to the Lightning lineup Thursday, and it turned out to be the game-winner in a 5-4 triumph over the Florida Panthers.

Stamkos added an assist, Valtteri Filppula contributed three of those, and Ryan Callahan scored his first as a Bolt as well.

Honorable mention: Zdeno Chars and Jarome Iginla scored the goals at the Boston Bruins beat the Phoenix Coyotes 2-1 and moved to first in the East... Michal Neuvirth stopped 51 of 54 shots for the Buffalo Sabres, but it wasn't enough, as the Carolina Hurricanes cruised to a 4-2 win... Zach Parise scored the game-winner in a 2-1 Minnesota Wild victory over the New York Rangers... Mason Raymond's shorthanded marker was the difference as the Toronto Maple Leafs halted the Los Angeles Kings' win streak at eight with a 3-2 comeback victory. The goal came after an incredible save from James Reimer, who came on in relief of an injured Jonathan Bernier and was incredible. Watch the whole sequence:

Did You Know? Jeff Skinner matched a Hurricanes franchise record with 13 shots on goal versus Buffalo.

Dishonorable mention: The Sabres only mustered 23 shots on goal versus Carolina. Again, Jeff Skinner had more than half of their total by himself.

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