Monday, February 2, 2015

NHL Players Of Week/Month Named

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price, Tampa Bay Lightning center Cedric Paquette and Minnesota Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending Feb. 1.
Price posted a 3-0-0 record with a 0.66 goals-against average, .980 save percentage and two shutouts to backstop the Canadiens (32-14-3, 67 points) to three victories in four outings. He made 40 saves in a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars Jan. 27, marking his second 40-plus save performance of the season (also Dec. 12 vs. LAK: 44 saves). Price then notched a pair of 1-0 shutouts, registering 24 saves in a victory over the New York Rangers Jan. 29 and 36 saves in an overtime triumph against the Washington Capitals Jan. 31. The 27-year-old Anahim Lake, B.C., native has appeared in 39 games this season, sharing second in the NHL with 27 wins while also placing in the top five in save percentage (2nd; .933), goals-against average (3rd; 2.03) and shutouts (t-5th; 4). Price now has 29 career shutouts, all with the Canadiens, tying Patrick Roy for fifth in franchise history.
            Paquette led the NHL with five goals, finding the back of the net in all three of his games to help the Lightning (32-15-4, 68 points) maintain first place in the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference. He scored his sixth goal of the season in a 4-2 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes Jan. 27. Paquette then recorded his first career hat trick, including the game-winning marker, in a 5-1 triumph over the Detroit Red Wings Jan. 29. With his performance, Paquette became the first rookie to post a hat trick against the Red Wings since Dec. 18, 1993 (Oleg Petrov). He capped the week by notching his third career game-winning goal in a 3-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets Jan. 31. The 21-year-old Gaspe, Que., native has 10-6—16 in 41 games this season, including 5-4—9 in his past 10 outings.
            Dubnyk went 3-0-0 with a 1.00 goals-against average, .967 save percentage and one shutout to lead the Wild (23-20-6, 52 points) to three victories in as many starts. He made 23 saves in a 2-1 triumph over his former team, the Edmonton Oilers, Jan. 27. Dubnyk then stopped all 30 shots he faced to record his 11th career shutout (third this season) in a 1-0 win over the Calgary Flames Jan. 29. He closed the week with 35 saves in a 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks Feb. 1, leading the Wild to their second all-time sweep of a trip through Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver (also March 13-17, 2007). The 28-year-old Regina, Sask., native has appeared in 26 games this season, compiling a 14-6-2 record. That includes a 5-1-0 mark with a 1.71 goals-against average, .935 save
Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, New York Islanders center John Tavares and Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the month of January.
Ovechkin led all players with 12 goals, six power-play markers and 59 shots on goal to power the Capitals (25-15-10, 60 points) to a 7-3-3 January and the second Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. He registered points in nine of 13 contests (12-3—15), highlighted by six multi-point performances and nine games in which he found the back of the net. That included a trio of multi-goal outings (Jan. 16 at NSH, Jan. 20 vs. EDM and Jan. 28 vs. PIT) as well as a pair of game-winning markers (Jan. 12 vs. COL and Jan. 28 vs. PIT). Ovechkin opened the month with 1-1—2, including the primary assist on Troy Brouwer’s tiebreaking goal with 12.9 seconds remaining in regulation, in the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and also picked up three assists for Team Foligno in the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Game. The 29-year-old Moscow, Russia, native leads the NHL with 31 goals, 14 power-play markers, six game-winning goals (tied) and 248 shots on goal in 50 appearances this season. He is the fifth player in NHL history to record at least 30 goals in each of his first 10 seasons, joining Mike Gartner (15), Wayne Gretzky (13), Mike Bossy (10) and Jari Kurri (10).
            Tavares shared third in the NHL with 16 points (8-8—16) in 12 games to lead the Islanders (32-16-1, 65 points) to a 7-5-0 January and the top spot in the Metropolitan Division. He found the scoresheet in eight of 12 contests, including seven multi-point performances. Tavares notched a trio of game-winning goals: Jan. 2 at CGY, Jan. 9 at NJD and Jan. 19 vs. PHI. That included his seventh career overtime goal (a franchise record) and third this season in a 3-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils Jan. 9 in which he factored on all three of the club’s goals (2-1—3). Tavares also scored four times for Team Toews in the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Game, equaling an NHL All-Star Game record last achieved in 2003 (Dany Heatley). The 24-year-old Mississauga, Ont., native paces the Islanders with 23-25—48 in 49 contests this season. His 23 goals share eighth in the League, while his 48 points are tied for 11th overall.
Rask went 7-1-3 with a 1.61 goals-against average, .949 save percentage and one shutout to backstop the Bruins (27-16-7, 61 points) to an 8-1-3 January and the first Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. He allowed two or fewer goals in nine of 11 appearances, highlighted by a 30-save shutout in a 3-0 win over the New York Rangers Jan. 15. Rask made a season-high 43 saves in a 5-2 triumph over the New York Islanders Jan. 29, improving to 8-0-0 in his career when registering at least 40 stops. He also posted a four-game winning streak from Jan. 7-15, his second such run of the season (also Nov. 1-10). The 27-year-old Savonlinna, Finland, native and reigning Vezina Trophy winner has appeared in 41 games this season, compiling a 22-11-7 record with a 2.31 goals-against average, .921 save percentage and two shutouts.

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