NEW YORK - Minnesota Wild right wing Marian Gaborik, Atlanta Thrashers goaltender Kari Lehtonen and Nashville Predators center Jason Arnott have been named the NHL's 'Three Stars' for the week ending December 23.
FIRST STAR -- MARIAN GABORIK, RW, MINNESOTA WILD
Gaborik led all NHL scorers with eight points (six goals, two assists) as the Wild won two of three games for the week. He recorded points in all three games, including a five-goal, six-point performance in a 6-3 victory over the New York Rangers Dec. 20. Gaborik scored one goal in the opening period and two in each of the second and third, becoming the first player to tally five times in one game since Detroit's Sergei Fedorov in a 5-4 overtime victory over Washington on Dec. 26, 1996 and the first to do in regulation time since Pittsburgh's Mario Lemieux in an 8-4 victory over St. Louis on March 26, 1996. Gaborik also recorded a goal in a 3-2 victory over the Nashville Predators Dec. 18 and had an assist in a 4-1 loss to the Detroit Red Wings Dec. 22.
SECOND STAR -- KARI LEHTONEN, G, ATLANTA THRASHERS
Lehtonen posted a record of 4-0-0, a 1.96 goals-against average and .935 save percentage as the Thrashers (18-17-1, 37 points) posted four wins for the week. He recorded 32 saves in a 6-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning Dec. 18, made 28 saves in a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators Dec. 20 and stopped 37 of 39 shots and both shootout attempts in a 3-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens Dec. 22. He finished the week by making 18 saves in a 3-2 overtime victory over the St. Louis Blues Dec. 23. Lehtonen has posted a 6-6-0 record with a 3.20 goals-against average, .903 save percentage and one shutout in 14 appearances this season.
THIRD STAR -- JASON ARNOTT, C, NASHVILLE PREDATORS
Arnott ranked second among NHL scorers with eight points (four goals, four assists) in four games. He recorded one goal and one assist in a 3-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild Dec. 18, notched one assist in a 5-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks Dec. 19 and recorded three goals, including the game-winner, and one assist in a 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Kings Dec. 22. Arnott finished the week recording one assist in a 3-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets Dec. 23. Arnott leads the Predators in scoring with 29 points (12-17--29) in 33 games.