Hockey Night's 3 Stars senior hockey writer Tim Wharnsby picks Sunday's top NHL performers:

FIRST STAR: Peter Mueller, C, Colorado

Before he left the game late in the third period after being nailed by San Jose Sharks defenceman Rob Blake, Mueller scored twice and added an assist in the Avalanche's 5-4 overtime win. The Avalanche hadn't scored more than three goals in a game during their 1-6-1 skid. So the win strengthened Colorado's hold on the eighth and final playoff position in the Western Conference.

SECOND STAR: Sami Salo, D, Vancouver

The Canucks blue-liner scored the overtime winner on the power play and added an assist in Vancouver's 4-3 win at home against the Minnesota Wild. The Salo goal enabled the Canucks to clinch their third division title in four years under head coach Alain Vigneault.

THIRD STAR: Kimmo Timonen, D, Philadelphia

The Flyers defenceman scored a goal and set up another to help eighth-place Philadelphia hand the Detroit Red Wings their first regulation loss since March 9. The Flyers' victory pushed them to 84 points with three games remaining, two in front of the ninth-place New York Rangers who have a game in hand.