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Friday’s Three Stars: Coyotes strike first, take Game 1 in OT vs. Predators

Greg Wyshynski
Puck Daddy

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No. 1 Star: Ray Whitney, Phoenix Coyotes

The Wizard scored the game-winning goal at 14:04 in OT, winning Game 1 for the Coyotes in a 4-3 victory over the Nashville Predators. Whitney also assisted on Radim Vrbata's first-period power-play goal.

No. 2 Star: Mike Smith, Phoenix Coyotes

Smith made 39 saves, including 24 of 25 in the third period and overtime, to back-stop the Coyotes to the Game 1 win.

No. 3 Star: Patric Hornqvist, Nashville Predators

The Predators forward made an impact all night, earning primary assists on goals by Andrei Kostitsyn and Martin Erat, playing 20:18. He had eight shots and was a disturbance in goalie Mike Smith's crease.

Honorable mention: Brandon Yip had the other Nashville goal. … Rostislav Klesla had a goal and an assist, while Mikkel Boedker scored this third goal of the playoffs. .. Pekka Rinne made 20 saves.

Conn Smythe Watch: 1. Claude Giroux, Philadelphia Flyers; 2. Mike Smith, Phoenix Coyotes; 3. Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings; 4. Pekka Rinne, Nashville Predators; 5. Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers; 6. Andy McDonald, St. Louis Blues; 7. Braden Holtby, Washington Capitals; 8. Danny Briere, Philadelphia Flyers; 9. Mikkel Boedker, Phoenix Coyotes; 10. Alex Radulov, Nashville Predators;

Dishonorable mention: Derek Morris was a minus-2. … Roman Josi and Kevin Klein were a minus-2, and Klein in particular had a lowlight here.

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