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Kiprusoff, Toews, Mason up for Fan Fav

by Compiled By
Every Saturday night throughout the regular season — coinciding with the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast on CBC and RDS — NHL representatives will evaluate NHL player performances from the week prior to select the top three NHL player performances for that week.

Fans then will have the opportunity each week to go online at and vote for their favorite player from amongst the three nominees.  At season's end, each winning player will be placed in a pool with the other weekly winners, from which a panel of independent NHL judges will narrow down the list to 10 finalists based on their season-long performances.  Fans will then have the opportunity to vote for their favorite NHL player from these top 10 finalists.  Exciting NHL prizes will be available to both U.S. and Canadian participants.

Our Scotiabank Fan Fav nominees this week include two of the NHL's hottest netminders and one of its rising stars.

Calgary's Miikka Kiprusoff has been piling up the victories at a pace that could make him a threat to break Martin Brodeur's NHL record. Kiprusoff was the winner in all three of Calgary's games last week, allowing only four goals. For the season, he's tops among all netminders with 37 victories in his 58 appearances, and he's 7-0-2 in his last nine starts.

Chicago's Jonathan Toews, the NHL's youngest captain, got off to a slow start. But as the season has gone on, the 20-year-old center has gotten better and better. He capped his week on Friday night with the first three-goal performance of his young career against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"Johnny's gotten better every game," coach Joel Quenneville said after the Pittsburgh game. "We just love the trend and how he's taken charge. He had a special night tonight and did a lot of good things besides the production. The puck was following him around. All year long, we want, as a team, to improve. Johnny's been doing that in his own game, and I think that's going to help us."

Like Toews, St. Louis goaltender Chris Mason has gotten hot after a slow start. Mason, who signed with the Blues as a free agent last summer after five seasons in Nashville, has been one of the NHL's hottest goalies since the start of the new year. He was 2-0-1 last week, allowing only three goals on 86 shots.

Mason is perhaps the biggest reason the Blues have climbed into the thick of the Western Conference playoff race. His best performance was a 41-save gem in a 3-1 win at Dallas on Thursday.

"That was a celebration of exceptional goaltending," Blues coach Andy Murray said afterwards.

Last week's winner, Philadelphia center Mike Richards, has become the NHL's most dangerous player when his team is killing a penalty. Richards became the first player this season to score when his team was two men down when he scored a 3-on-5 goal against the New York Rangers, and had a three-game streak of scoring a shorthanded goal.

But Richards is plenty dangerous in other situations as well. He personally led the Flyers to a 6-3 victory over Buffalo by scoring twice (including another shorthanded goal) and setting up three others.

"He's our puck thrower and distributor of the puck," said linemate Mike Knuble, who scored the game-winner against Buffalo on a play started by Richards. "We want to make sure the puck is in his hands as much as we can. He has great vision all over the ice. He is so responsibly defensively and at the same time so good offensively."

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