NEW YORK - Florida Panthers left wing Jonathan Huberdeau, Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry and New York Rangers right wing Artemi Panarin have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the month of December.
FIRST STAR - JONATHAN HUBERDEAU, LW, FLORIDA PANTHERS
Huberdeau tied for the most points in the NHL in December, posting 6-16-22 in 13 contests for an average of 1.69 points-per-game - tops in the League - as the Panthers (20-14-5, 45 points) had a 7-6-0 record for the month. There have been two instances of a Florida player with more points in a calendar month: Aleksander Barkov (7-17-24) and Huberdeau (9-14-23) in March 2019 (16 GP). Huberdeau had points in 10 of 13 games, including back-to-back four-point showings and three four-point outings overall. Huberdeau recorded his seventh career four-point game Dec. 29 to surpass Pavel Bure (6) for the most in franchise history - he also tallied his 50th point of the season that day. The 26-year-old native of Saint-Jerome, Que., moved into second place on the club's all-time points list with 0-2-2 Dec. 8 vs. SJS. Huberdeau (141-271-412 in 506 GP) now needs seven points to tie Olli Jokinen (188-231-419 in 567 GP) for the most in franchise history. Huberdeau ranks eighth in the League with 16-37-53 (39 GP) and was named to his first NHL All-Star Game, which will be played Jan. 25 in St. Louis.
Video: MTL@FLA: Huberdeau scores off defender's skate
SECOND STAR - TRISTAN JARRY, G, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Jarry led all goaltenders in wins (8; tied), shutouts (3) and goals-against average (1.54) across nine appearances in December - and ranked second in save percentage (.947) - to help the Penguins post the League's best record of the month (10-2-0, 20 points) and improve to 24-11-4 overall (52 points), third in the Metropolitan Division. His 1.54 goals-against average in December was the second-best in a calendar month by a Penguins goaltender behind Marc-Andre Fleury (1.44) in March 2008 (min. 9 GS). Jarry allowed two or fewer goals in seven games, including back-to-back shutouts and three clean sheets overall. He established a franchise record with a shutout streak of 177:15 from Nov. 29 to Dec. 10, besting the previous mark of 173:06 set by Tomas Vokoun (March 22-April 2, 2013). The 24-year-old native of Surrey, B.C., also joined Vokoun and Fleury (2x) as the only Penguins to post consecutive shutouts and later followed Fleury as the second Pittsburgh netminder with three shutouts in a span of four appearances. In his third NHL season, Jarry owns a 13-5-0 record in 18 games and leads the League in shutouts (3; tied), goals-against average (1.88) and save percentage (.938).
Video: CBJ@PIT: Jarry makes great save to deny Bjorkstrand
THIRD STAR - ARTEMI PANARIN, RW, NEW YORK RANGERS
Panarin tied for the most points in the NHL in December and finished one back of the League lead in goals, posting 10-12-22 in 14 games to help the Rangers (19-16-4, 42 points) to a 6-7-1 record in the month. In his first season with New York, Panarin has had at least 20 points in each of the past two calendar months (7-16-23 in November) - a first by a Rangers player since Jaromir Jagr in November and December 2005. Panarin became the ninth different Rangers player to record three straight three-point games; John Ogrodnick (Feb. 21-26, 1990: 3 GP) was the last before him, while only Andy Bathgate (Nov. 8-19, 1961: 4 GP) and Frank Boucher (Dec. 8-17, 1929: 4 GP) had a longer such run. Panarin scored a goal in eight of 14 games - including his third NHL hat trick - as he and Mika Zibanejad (10-7-17 in 14 GP) became the second set of Rangers teammates in the last 40 years to each score 10 goals in the same calendar month (also Pat Verbeek and Mark Messier in December 1995).
Video: NYR@SJS: Panarin earns third NHL hat trick in 6-3 win