Montreal Canadiens left wing John Scott, Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Cam Atkinson and Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending Jan. 31.
FIRST STAR – JOHN SCOTT, LW, MONTREAL CANADIENS
Scott earned MVP honors and captained the Pacific Division to victory at 2016 Honda NHL All-Star Game, the first midseason showcase played under the 3-on-3 format. He scored twice on three shots on goal and registered a +2 rating in the team’s 9-6 win over the Central Division in the semifinals of the tournament. Scott then recorded two shots on goal in a 1-0 triumph over the Atlantic Division in the final, helping the Pacific Division capture the $1 million winner-take-all prize. “You can’t put it into words, you can’t write this stuff,” Scott said. “It was a whirlwind and it went by so fast, but I loved it. It was probably the coolest thing I have done in hockey.”
SECOND STAR – CAM ATKINSON, RW, COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS
Atkinson paced the NHL with four goals and shared the League lead with five points in two games to power the Blue Jackets (19-27-5, 43 points) to a sweep of their home-and-home series against the Montreal Canadiens. He recorded his third career hat trick in a 5-2 victory Jan. 25 to become the third player in franchise history to post a trio of hat tricks (also Rick Nash: 5, Tyler Wright: 3). Atkinson followed that effort with 1-1—2 in another 5-2 win Jan. 26. The 26-year-old Riverside, Conn., native ranks third on the Blue Jackets with 17-15—32 in 50 games this season. His 17 goals are five shy of his career high of 22 established in 78 contests in 2014-15.
THIRD STAR – JACK EICHEL, C, BUFFALO SABRES
Eichel registered 2-2—4 in two contests to lead the Sabres (20-26-4, 44 points) to a split of their pair of games. He collected two assists in a 6-3 loss to the New York Rangers Jan. 25. Eichel then scored twice, including the tying and winning goals, in a 3?2 comeback victory over the Ottawa Senators Jan. 26. The 19-year-old North Chelmsford, Mass., native ranks second among rookies in goals (16) and points (34) in 50 games this season. That includes three multi-goal performances, eight multi-point efforts and three game-winning goals.