PALO ALTO, California (

TheStreet

) --

Dell's

(DELL) - Get Report

decision to up the ante

in its

3Par

(PAR) - Get Report

tussle with

Hewlett-Packard

(HPQ) - Get Report

prompted a selloff in key storage stocks Thursday.

Isilon Systems

( ISLN),

Compellent

( CML) and

CommVault

(CVLT) - Get Report

had all been touted as potential acquisition targets as the 3Par bidding war placed storage firmly in the spotlight. The three stocks, however, started to trade down as investors cooled on the prospect of further M&A.

Isilon, which makes clustered storage systems for industries such as scientific research and movie making, was the biggest loser. The company's stock fell 60 cents, or 3.07%, to reach $18.92. Data management specialist CommVault also took a dive, albeit a more modest one, with the software maker's stock dipping 17 cents, or 1.13%, to $14.87. Network storage company Compellent was another loser, falling 26 cents, or 1.08%, to $23.89, as the Nasdaq fell 0.33%.

Even the prospect of the losing 3Par bidder searching elsewhere for a storage deal has done little for the companies' stocks. At least one analyst doubts whether the firms will actually get snapped up, at least in the immediate future.

"We don't see a storage M&A frenzy short term," wrote Paul Mansky, an analyst at Cannacord Adams, in a recent note. "Compellent presents channel conflict (100% indirect), has difficulty scaling, and has seen its technology lead narrow - Isilon could be a candidate, but is highly vertically concentrated."

There had also been some speculation that storage giant

NetApp

(NTAP) - Get Report

and data networking company

Brocade

(BRCD)

could be in the firing line, with HP and Dell, respectively, mentioned as potential acquirers.

Neither company would come cheap. NetApp's market cap is a massive $14.03 billion, although Brocade's is a more modest $2.18 billion. 3Par, in comparison, boasts a $1.63 billion market cap.

NetApp shares crept up 46 cents, or 1.17%, to $39.76 on Thursday while Brocade gained 5 cents, or 1.04%, to reach $4.83.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

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