After posting a posting a 2-0-1 record, 0.65 goals-against average, .973 save percentage and two shutouts, Montreal Canadiens netminder Carey Price was named the NHL’s First Star of the Week. The highlight of Price’s week was posting wins (and consecutive goose eggs) over the ‘Canes and Rangers to move into 12th place on the Canadiens’ all-time list for goalie wins, passing the legendary Georges Vezina. Price should also pass Rogie Vachon, Charlie Hodge and Gerry McNeil this season and has an outside shot of eclipsing Jose Theodore for seventh place (141 wins; Price currently has 106.)
Second star went to San Jose defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic. He tied for the league scoring lead with seven points (1G, 6A) and posted a plus-7 rating as the Sharks won three straight and moved atop the Pacific Division. Vlasic now has 2G-9A-11PTS, tied for 23rd among all NHL defensemen, and is probably waiting to hear from the Vlasic Pickle people about potential endorsement opportunities. Seriously, how has this not happened yet?
Third star of the week went to Philadelphia Flyers rookie Matt Read. Read’s a pretty interesting story — after going undrafted out of Des Moines of the USHL (where he was teammates with Montreal’s Aaron Palushaj and Edmonton’s Jeff Petry), Read spent four years at Bemidji State before Philadelphia offered him a free agent deal in March.
Read scored four goals last week, including the game-winner with 18.6 seconds left against Phoenix. Even though he turned 25 this year, Read is still eligible for the Calder Trophy and has to be considered a serious candidate — he’s fourth in rookie scoring but leads all first-year players in goals scored, with eight.
(NB: Crazy to think, but Philly could’ve had three Calder candidates this year — Read, Sean Couturier and had he not broken his foot, Brayden Schenn.)