NEW YORK - Colorado Avalanche right wing Mikko Rantanen, Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the month of October.
FIRST STAR - MIKKO RANTANEN, RW, COLORADO AVALANCHE
Rantanen paced the NHL with 16 assists and 21 points in 12 games to propel the Avalanche to a 7-3-2 (16 points) opening month. He collected at least one point in all but one of his October appearances, including nine straight to begin the season (Oct. 4-22: 4-12-16). Rantanen registered five multi-point performances, highlighted by four-point outings Oct. 18 at NJD (1-3-4) and Oct. 26 vs. OTT (1-3-4) - the fourth and fifth such efforts of his career (177 GP). He also shared the League lead (with linemate Gabriel Landeskog) with a +14 rating. The 22-year-old Nousiainen, Finland, native ranks eighth in the NHL with 34-71-105 in 93 games since the start of 2017-18.
SECOND STAR - EVGENI MALKIN, C, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Malkin led the NHL with 1.90 points per game, totaling 6-13-19 in 10 outings to guide the Penguins to a 6-2-2 (14 points) October and into first place in the Metropolitan Division. He found the scoresheet in all but one of his games, collecting multiple points six times and three points on four occasions: Oct. 4 vs. WSH (1-2-3), Oct. 11 vs. VGK (0-3-3), Oct. 18 at TOR (2-1-3) and Oct. 27 at VAN (2-1-3). The 32-year-old Magnitogorsk, Russia, native ranks third in the NHL with 376-573-949 (794 GP) since making his League debut in 2006-07, behind only Alex Ovechkin (563-467-1,030) and Sidney Crosby (378-650-1,028).
THIRD STAR - PATRICK KANE, RW, CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS
Kane shared the League lead with 11 goals and placed fourth overall with 18 points in 12 outings to power the Blackhawks to a 6-4-3 (15 points) first month of the season. He also found the scoresheet in all but one game, accumulating five multi-point performances and a pair of three-point efforts: Oct. 20 at CBJ (2-1-3) and Oct. 27 at STL (2-1-3). Kane scored in eight different contests, becoming the first Blackhawks player with 11 goals through the team's opening 11 games since 1967-68 (Bobby Hull). The 29-year-old Buffalo native ranks fourth in the NHL with 323-523-846 (834 GP) since making his debut in 2007-08.