Lidstrom bests Blues

Thursday, December 16, 2010
Blues defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo, left, scores against Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard during the second period Wednesday in Detroit. (AP photo)

DETROIT -- Nicklas Lidstrom crossed off about the only thing left on his NHL to-do list.

The star defenseman scored three goals for his first career hat trick and added an assist to help the Detroit Red Wings beat the St. Louis Blues 5-2 on Wednesday night.

"You always think you're going to get one sooner or later. You've got to continue to shoot the puck and hope for some bounces," Lidstrom said. "You can't quit shooting the puck. That's the key to everything."

The 40-year-old Swede, a six-time Norris Trophy winner as the NHL's best defenseman, has helped Detroit win four Stanley Cup titles and also won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoffs MVP.

"He doesn't screw up. And if he does, it's really quiet," Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard said. "He's just the perfect professional. He goes about his business in the right way and I think that's why everyone really has that perception of him. He comes to work every single day not only during the season but during the summer."

The Detroit captain had 19 two-goal games in his 19-year career before breaking through.

"Well, obviously being a D-man, they're [hat tricks] not going to come very often. Good for him," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. "He's done everything else, might as well do that. We needed a big win tonight and we got it. That's what's most important."

Danny Cleary added a goal and two assists, Niklas Kronwall also scored, Henrik Zetterberg had four assists and Howard made 19 saves for Detroit.

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