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Tomas Vokoun stops an attempt by Boston's Blake Wheeler to help preserve Florida's 1-0 shootout win. ((Elsa/Getty Images))

CBCSports.ca senior reporter Tim Wharnsby names the top performers in the NHL from Thursday night.

FIRST STAR: Tomas Vokoun, G, Florida Panthers

Both Vokoun and his Boston counterpart, Tim Thomas, enjoyed shutouts in the Panthers' 1-0 shootout win. But Vokoun was the busier of the two goalies, making 40 saves, including 19 in the second period. After a slow start, he is rolling with three shutouts in his last four starts.

SECOND STAR: Ilya Kovalchuk, F, Atlanta Thrashers

Kovalchuk had an immediate impact upon his return after missing three weeks with a broken right foot. The Thrashers captain scored his 10th goal and set up two others in Atlanta's 5-3 road win against the Rangers. Atlanta went 3-3-0 without their Russian leader.

THIRD STAR: Tomas Plekanec, F, Montreal Canadiens

Montreal's leading point-getter — 17 points, including four goals — set up his team's first three goals in a 4-2 victory in Phoenix. The Canadiens have improved to 10-2-4 against the Coyotes since the franchise moved to the desert in 1997.