NEW YORK — Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, Colorado Avalanche goaltender Craig Anderson and St. Louis Blues center Keith Tkachuk have been named the NHL 'Three Stars' of the Week.
Each Monday, the NHL will recognize three players who delivered the League's top performances over the past week. Due to the mid-week start to the regular season, this week's selections were based on games starting Thursday, Oct. 1.
FIRST STAR — ALEX OVECHKIN, LW, WASHINGTON CAPITALS Ovechkin took the early lead in the NHL scoring race with consecutive three-point performances and a cumulative +4 rating as the Capitals opened the regular season with victories over the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs. The reigning League MVP tallied two goals, including the game-winner, plus one assist, five shots, three hits and a +2 rating in a 4-1 victory at Boston Oct. 1 and notched one goal, two assists, five shots, four hits and a +2 rating in a 6-4 victory against Toronto in the Caps' home opener Oct. 3.
SECOND STAR — CRAIG ANDERSON, G, COLORADO AVALANCHE Anderson stopped 73 of 74 shots in posting a 2-0-0 record with a 1.00 goals-against average, .973 save percentage and one shutout as the Avalanche opened the season with a pair of home victories. Anderson recorded 38 saves in a 5-2 win over the San Jose Sharks Oct. 1 and stopped 35 shots for his eighth career shutout in a 3-0 victory over the Vancouver Canucks Oct. 3. Anderson signed with Colorado as a free agent July 1 after three seasons with the Florida Panthers. He finished third among NHL goaltenders last season with a .924 save percentage and posted a 15-7-5 record in 31 appearances.
THIRD STAR — KEITH TKACHUK, C, ST. LOUIS BLUES Tkachuk opened the season by notching four points (two goals, two assists) in the Blues' two-game sweep over the Detroit Red Wings in the 2009 Compuware NHL Premiere Stockholm series. After tallying one assist in a 4-3 victory Oct. 2, Tkachuk notched three points (two goals, one assist) and earned First Star honors in a 5-3 win Oct. 3. He led all players in the game with seven hits, recorded five shots and won nine of 16 face-offs. Playing In his 18th NHL season, the Melrose, Mass. native increased his career goals total to 527, second all-time among U.S.-born players and 31st all-time.