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Jamie Benn is the NHL’s First Star of the Week


After notching seven points in three games — each game being a multi-point effort — Dallas Stars left wing Jamie Benn was named the NHL’s first star of the week.

Benn, 22, was everywhere for the Stars last week as they clung to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. In a 5-4 loss to Detroit, he had a goal and two assists. In a 4-1 win over Nashville, he had a goal and an assist. And in a 4-1 win over Edmonton he scored twice, which included his fourth game-winning goal of the season. Benn now has points in 10 of his last 11 games and leads Dallas in scoring with 13G-28A-41PTS in 40 games — that puts him in a tie for 14th in league scoring with Chicago’s Jonathan Toews and Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson.

Second star went to Toronto RW Joffrey Lupul. Like Benn, he too notched seven points in three games last week — all Toronto wins — and recorded the 300th point of his NHL career in a 7-3 victory over Tampa Bay. Here’s a fun fact for you: Lupul (seventh overall) became just the fifth player from the 2002 NHL Draft class to reach the 300-point milestone, joining Rick Nash (first), Alex Semin (13th), Pierre-Marc Bouchard (eighth) and Jarret Stoll (36th).

Third star went to Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson. He posted a 3-0-1 record, 2.41 GAA and .929 save percentage as the Senators improbably moved to fifth in the Eastern Conference. I say improbably because of how awful both Ottawa and Anderson were to start the season — the Sens started 1-5 and were outscored  30-16; Anderson was on the hook for four of those losses and 22 of the goals (he also got hooked from games twice) and seemed in danger of losing his starting gig to career journeyman Alex Auld.

So good on ya, Andy.

Price placed on injured reserve; Yakupov to miss 2-4 weeks with sprained ankle

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Two injury updates in one post.

First, the situation with Montreal goalie Carey Price, who was hurt last night versus the Rangers.

According to Canadiens coach Michel Therrien, Price has been placed on injured reserve with a lower-body injury. That means he’ll be out at least a week, though no exact timeline was provided.

“We don’t know how long Carey will be out, but for us it’s business as usual,” said Therrien.

Mike Condon will get the start tomorrow in New Jersey.

As for Oilers forward Nail Yakupov, he’ll be out 2-4 weeks after spraining his ankle last night in Carolina while getting tangled up with a linesman.

Getzlaf didn’t love the ‘dead’ atmosphere at Coyotes game

Martin Erat, Ryan Getzlaf
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Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf wasn’t impressed with at least two things last night in Arizona:

1. His team’s performance in a 4-2 loss to the Coyotes.
2. The atmosphere inside Gila River Arena, where the announced attendance was just 11,578.

“It’s hard. When you come into a building … it’s dead,” Getzlaf told the O.C. Register. “Nothing against the fans. It’s hard to fill a big building like this and have the amount of people in it to build your energy. So you have to do it yourself. You have to be ready when you step on the ice. I thought we came out flat.”

Anaheim’s record fell to 8-11-4 with the defeat.

The Coyotes’ average attendance also fell, to 13,144 in eight games.

Jarred Tinordi becomes the latest youngster to be sent to the AHL for ‘conditioning’

Jarred Tinordi, Brendan Gallagher
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Like Frank Corrado (see here), Tomas Jurco (see here), Stanislav Galiev (see here), and Patrik Nemeth (see here) before him, Canadiens defenseman Jarred Tinordi is off to the AHL for a conditioning stint.

Tinordi, 23, has yet to play a single game for the Habs this season; however, because he’s no longer exempt from waivers, the former first-round pick has remained on Montreal’s roster.

It’s an issue that’s received a good deal of attention lately. Some believe the league should do something about it, lest more young players get “stuck” in the NHL.

Tinordi will only be allowed to spend two weeks in St. John’s, as per the rules of his conditioning loan.

Safe to say, if you’re an NHL general manager who thinks Tinordi still has potential, Marc Bergevin would welcome your best offer.

Stars place Lehtonen on IR, call up Campbell and Nemeth

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Kari Lehtonen will miss at least a few games with the upper-body injury he suffered the other night against Ottawa. The Dallas Stars announced today that they’ve placed the 32-year-old goalie on injured reserve, retroactive to Tuesday.

With Lehtonen out, Jack Campbell has been called up from AHL Texas to be Antti Niemi‘s backup. The Stars host Vancouver Friday, with a game at Minnesota Saturday.

Campbell, the 11th overall pick in the 2010 draft, has struggled in the AHL this season, going 3-3-0 with an .873 save percentage.

The Stars have also recalled defenseman Patrik Nemeth after the 23-year-old completed his 14-day conditioning assignment.

Related: Campbell credits ECHL stint for turning his game around