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Boucher's hat trick leads Stars over Kings

Nov 25, 2006 - 4:15 AM DALLAS (Ticker) -- Defenseman Philippe Boucher and the Dallas Stars continue to dominate the Los Angeles Kings this season.

Boucher scored his first career hat trick to lead the Stars to a 5-3 win over the Kings.

Dallas, winners of three in a row, has beaten Los Angeles four straight times and outscored the Kings, 16-7, this season.

All three of Boucher's goals were on the power play. He beat Los Angeles goaltender Mathieu Garon twice in the first period on slap shots from the point.

"Personally, I saw shooting lanes today and made it happen that way, but I think we made great plays all the way through," Boucher said. "We changed our breakout and had success carrying the puck in. Puck control is the biggest thing on the power play. If you don't have it, you won't have too many chances, and I bet you we had the puck 85 percent of the time on the power play. That makes a big difference."

Boucher notched his third goal when he beat again beat Garon from the point.

"It was a great pass, I felt like Ribs (Mike Ribeiro) was going to make that pass and with two goals, I wasn't going to pass up a chance to shoot like that," Boucher said. "I'm just glad it went in. It's a good night. It's a good feeling."

"Their offense came from their point men who have big shots," Los Angeles coach Marc Crawford said. "Tonight, Boucher found holes on three of his shots. We responded really well with great character and great determination, but we need to get breaks."

Defenseman Sergei Zubov and Jere Lehtinen scored the other goals for the Stars. Dustin Brown scored twice for the Kings.

Dallas goaltender Mike Smith recorded his third straight victory.

"It's been a pretty exciting week for me, getting a couple of wins in a row," said Smith, who has only given up five goals in his three straight triumphs. "It's a big confidence-builder. If you doubt yourself, you're in trouble. I want to go in and play with confidence every time out. I want to take advantage of all my opportunities."

"He (Smith) has taken the ball and run with it," Dallas coach Dave Tippett said. "It was the worst of his three games, but he fought through it and showed some mental toughness. His attitude is unbelievable. He wants every minute he can get."

Dallas went 4-for-7 on the power play and the Kings were 3-for-7 with the extra skater.

"The Stars got three power-play goals in the first, and when you put a team like that on the power play, they are going to capitalize," Brown said. "They just happened to do it three times pretty quickly. We had the power-play chances in the second and we capitalized on ours, so that was a big difference for us in the second period."

"Power-play goals were the difference in the game," said Crawford, whose club slipped to 2-3-1 in its last six. "The difference was they got four and we got three. They got more breaks than we got."

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