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Hockey League Martin Brodeur earns 125th career shutout, hat-tricks for Bobby Ryan and Antoine Vermette

Martin Brodeur earned his 125th career NHL shutout on Monday, and his first for the St Louis Blues as they beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-0.

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Goaltender Brodeur picked up his first clean sheet in over a year, the former New Jersey Devils stalwart making 16 saves to deny the Avalanche.

The victory ended a four-match losing streak for the Blues (47 points), who stayed in touch with Central top-two the Chicago Blackhawks (52) and Nashville Predators (49).

The Blackhawks edged the Predators 5-4 after a shoot-out, arresting a three-goal deficit and equalising late in regulation before earning the two points.

Chicago trailed 3-0 after Roman Josi, Craig Smith and James Neal all struck for the Predators in a 16-minute period either side of the first break.

However, an explosive period from the Blackhawks saw them score thrice in just over seven minutes to equalise in the second period - only to concede again when Neal scored his second of the game.

Nashville were on track for a victory that would have seen them go level on points with the Central pace-setters but Bryan Bickell's goal for Chicago with little over a minute of regulation remaining tied it up at 4-4.

And Jonathan Toews' first-round goal in the shoot-out was the difference, as Chicago moved clear in the division.

The Winnipeg Jets are seven points off the leading Blackhawks, after losing 3-2 to the Minnesota Wild.

The Tampa Bay Lightning (50 points) and Montreal Canadiens (48) occupy the top two spots in the Atlantic division, after respectively extending winning streaks to three matches.

The Lightning conceded twice in the opening eight minutes but scrambled to a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs - each of Steven Stamkos, Ryan Callahan and Victor Hedman collecting two points apiece.

Stamkos and Callahan had one goal and one assist each, while Hedman assisted for Tampa Bay's first two goals.

The Canadiens downed the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 despite having 10 fewer shots on goal, and the victory saw them usurp the Detroit Red Wings (47 points) into second.

The Red Wings were humbled 5-2 by the Boston Bruins.

The New York Islanders moved level with the Metropolitan-leading Pittsburgh Penguins on 49 points, after edging the Washington Capitals 4-3 in overtime.

The Islanders led 3-0 with less than 16 minutes to play but were forced into an extra period after Washington struck three times in 13 minutes.

But Johnny Boychuk's powerplay goal in OT spared their blushes.

The Islanders' escape saw them eyeball the Penguins, who suffered a fourth straight defeat.

Sidney Crosby put Pittsburgh ahead in the first period but the New Jersey Devils - in Scott Gomez's 1000th game - responded with goals to Travis Zajac, Jaromir Jagr and Adam Henrique to post a 3-1 win.

A clutch Bobby Ryan hat-trick - all of his goals were lead changing - sent the Ottawa Senators to a 5-2 victory over fellow strugglers the Buffalo Sabres.

Ryan put his side 1-0 up, equalised for 2-2 and scored the go-ahead goal in the Senators' victory.

The Dallas Stars held on to beat the New York Rangers 3-2, with the final 39 minutes of the contest scoreless.

Two goals in 62 first-period seconds was enough for the Calgary Flames to beat the Los Angeles Kings 2-1, and Antoine Vermette's hat-trick sealed the Arizona Coyotes' 4-2 triumph over the Philadelphia Flyers.

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