SAN JOSE -- In a perfect world, Sharks coach Ron Wilson would have enjoyed being a witness to hockey history Wednesday night.
In a perfect world, he might even have been among those cheering -- at least inwardly -- for Mike Modano when the Dallas center tied and then broke the record for most NHL points by an American player.
But for the Sharks, Wednesday night was anything but perfect.
Modano scored twice in the first five minutes to lead the Stars to a 3-1 victory over San Jose. That eliminated the possibility that Wilson would be able to feel good about the accomplishment of the player he labeled "the best American player that I've seen, the most dynamic American player."
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Wilson coached Modano in World Cup and Olympic competition, and the two have remained close.
"Were it to happen tonight and we won the game, I would enjoy seeing him feel good about himself again," Wilson said before the game. "Their team has struggled, and he's struggled a little bit. I know the kind of person he is, and it will be good to get it out of the way."
The loss dropped the Sharks' record to 1-4 at HP Pavilion this season and vaulted Dallas into first place in the Pacific Division.
Modano, 37, wasn't the only one in the game looking to reach an NHL milestone. Sharks forward Jeremy Roenick is one shy of his 500th goal but will have to wait until Friday night in Anaheim for his next shot at becoming the third American player to hit that mark.
With his two goals, Modano now has 1,233 points, one more than retired defenseman Phil Housley.
Both of the veteran center's goals came down to one-on-one contests with Sharks goalie Evgeni Nabokov.
On the first, defenseman Sergei Zubov got the puck to Modano, who crossed into the Sharks' zone, got to the top of the left faceoff circle and fired a 44-foot slap shot that beat Nabokov low on the glove side.
Dallas was short-handed on the second goal, but a misplay by defenseman Matt Carle and center Joe Pavelski resulted in a Modano breakaway that ended with the puck sliding between Nabokov's pads as he slid to his left.
The sellout crowd of 17,496 recognized the historic event with warm applause that grew louder as the public address announcer spelled out what happened on each goal.
ELSEWHERE -- Joffrey Lupul and Jeff Carter scored on two of Philadelphia's first three shots, and the visiting Flyers beat Pittsburgh 3-1 for their first victory in two seasons over their division rival. ... Clarke MacArthur scored 3:16 into overtime, and Ryan Miller made 25 saves to give host Buffalo a 2-1 win over Boston. ... Martin St. Louis and Jan Hlavac scored in the first period, and Johan Holmqvist stopped 22 shots to help host Tampa Bay snap a six-game losing streak with a 3-1 win over Florida. ... Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg scored shootout goals to give host Detroit its eighth consecutive win, 3-2 over Nashville. Chris Mason stopped 43 shots for the Predators. ... Jonathan Toews, Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith scored during a decisive stretch in the third period as Chicago rallied to beat visiting Columbus 5-2. ... Wojtek Wolski and Marek Svatos scored shootout goals to lead host Colorado over Edmonton 4-3 for its sixth win in seven games. ... Peter Mueller registered his first career hat trick, Shane Doan scored with 30.3 seconds left in overtime, and visiting Phoenix extended its road winning streak to five with a 6-5 victory over Anaheim.
ECHL -- The Stockton Thunder raced to a 4-0 lead in the first period but allowed Phoenix to score five goals in the third period and fell to the host RoadRunners 6-5. Geoff Paukovich scored two goals three minutes apart for the Thunder, and Brad Farynuk had three assists.
More NHL coverage can be found at www.modbee.com/nhl.