Just seven days after earning the league’s third star honors, Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson has been named the NHL’s first star of the week.
Anderson won all three of his starts last week — he’s now 8-0-1 over his last nine games — while posting a .970 save percentage. His week was highlighted by a 34-save shutout over the Rangers, though his other two victories (stopping 29 of 30 shots against Montreal and 33 of 35 against Pittsburgh) were almost as stellar. Thanks to Anderson’s play, the Senators now find themselves in fifth in the Eastern Conference and just one point back of Boston in the Northeast Division (granted, the Bs have five games in hand.)
Second star went to Chicago forward Viktor Stalberg. The 25-year-old Swede set a career high in goals (14) after scoring five times last week, including his first career hat trick in Chicago’s 5-2 win over Columbus. Stalberg’s week also included two game-winning goals against CBJ and Minnesota — he’s now tied for the team lead in game-winning goals (five) with Patrick Sharp.
Third star went to Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin. He moved to within a point of Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin for the NHL scoring lead with a monster week — he had seven points in four games, though five of those game in an outstanding effort against Tampa Bay on Sunday. Malking scored a natural hat trick in the third period and assisted on two more Penguins tallies to bring his overall points total to 51.
Flames keep showing life, Stars stumble once again
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.