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MacKinnon, Desrosiers named QMJHL stars of week

by Mike G. Morreale

Center Nathan MacKinnon of the Halifax Mooseheads and goalie Philippe Desrosiers of the Rimouski Oceanic on Monday were named the TELUS stars of the week in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

MacKinnon and Desrosiers are regarded as top prospects for the 2013 NHL Draft in June at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. MacKinnon is listed as an A skater on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list and Desrosiers is listed as a B goalie.

Baie-Comeau Drakkar forward Petr Straka, a second-round draft choice of the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2010, was also named a star of the week in the QMJHL.

MacKinnon, who recently submitted his October blog for, collected four goals and six points last week. The Mooseheads have won 10 straight behind MacKinnon, who sports a seven-game goal-scoring streak and nine-game point-scoring streak (18 points). Many consider MacKinnon and Portland Winterhawks defenseman Seth Jones as the frontrunners to hear their name No. 1 overall at the Draft.

NHL Central Scouting's David Gregory believes MacKinnon and Jones will be battling all season for that top spot on every major draft board.

"It'll be different in a sense it's a forward and a defenseman, but the thing about MacKinnon is every time he's on the big stage, he seems to play his best and that's a real attractive feature to have," Gregory told "Seth Jones, having played at the level he did with the U.S. National Team last year, and the pressure that brings, he's also going to command a lot of attention in his first full season in the WHL.

"I think these two will push each other in that sense," he continued. "I don't think they'll ever admit to caring about it, but they both have that quality. They're both going to have a lot of eyes on them during the season."

MacKinnon is fourth in the QMJHL scoring race with 24 points in 13 games -- 15 goals, nine assists.

Desrosiers had a 2.15 goals-against average and .935 save percentage this past week, turning aside 87-of-93 shots. In Oceanic's 4-0 victory on Friday, he earned his first league shutout on 31 saves. Desrosiers sports a 2-3-1 record with a 2.96 GAA and .908 save percentage in eight appearances this season for Rimouski (8-4-1).

Straka collected four goals and seven in three games to also earn star of the week honors. The Czech native registered at least two points in each game. Straka has seven goals and 11 points in eight games for Baie-Comeau this season.

Follow Mike Morreale on Twitter at: @mike_morreale

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