NEW YORK (Feb. 24, 2020) – Colorado Avalanche goaltender Pavel Francouz, New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad and Calgary Flames left wing Andrew Mangiapane have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending Feb. 23.
FIRST STAR – PAVEL FRANCOUZ, G, COLORADO AVALANCHE
Francouz went 3-0-1 with a 1.46 goals-against average, .941 save percentage and one shutout to help the Central Division’s second-place Avalanche (36-18-7, 79 points) gain seven of a possible eight standings points for the week. Francouz opened the week making 23 saves in a 4-3 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning Feb. 17 and followed it up by stopping 27 of 28 shots in a 3-1 victory over the New York Islanders Feb. 19. He closed the week by stopping all 26 shots to earn his first career shutout in a 1-0 win over the Anaheim Ducks Feb. 21 and then one day later registered a 20-save performance in a 2-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings Feb. 22. A 29-year-old native of Plzen, Czech Republic, Francouz is in his first full NHL season with the Avalanche where he has gone 16-5-3 in 26 appearances while ranking in the top five in goals-against average (5th; 2.27) and save percentage (t-4th; .927).
SECOND STAR – MIKA ZIBANEJAD, C, NEW YORK RANGERS
Zibanejad tied for the League lead with eight points in three games (3-5—8) to help the Rangers (33-24-4, 70 points) win all three outings on the week and move within four points of the second Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference. Zibanejad opened the week by matching a career high with four points (1-3—4) in a 6-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks Feb. 19 and followed it up with a 1-2—3 performance in a 5-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes Feb. 21. He closed the week by scoring the game-tying goal in an eventual 3-2 triumph over the San Jose Sharks Feb. 22. Zibanejad, a 26-year-old native of Huddinge, Sweden, ranks second on the Rangers with 28-32—60 in 48 games this season – his 1.25 points per game in 2019-20 rank tied for eighth among all skaters with at least 25 appearances.
THIRD STAR – ANDREW MANGIAPANE, LW, CALGARY FLAMES
Mangiapane led all skaters with five goals in three games (5-1—6 in 3 GP) to help the Flames (32-25-6, 70 points), who occupy the first Wild Card position in the Western Conference, earn two wins in three contests. Mangiapane opened the week with a career-high four-point outing (3-1—4), including his first career hat trick, in a 6-4 win over the Anaheim Ducks Feb. 17. He was held off the scoresheet in a 4-3 loss to the Boston Bruins Feb. 21 before closing the week with a pair of goals, including the game-winning tally, in a 4-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings Feb. 23. Mangiapane, a 23-year-old native of Toronto, Ont., has appeared in a career-high 61 games this season ranking fifth on the Flames in goals with 15-12—27.
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