NEW YORK – Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby, Nashville Predators goaltender Chris Mason and Calgary Flames right wing Jarome Iginla have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the week ending Dec. 17. Each Monday, the NHL will recognize three players who delivered the League’s top performances over the preceding week.
FIRST STAR -- SIDNEY CROSBY, C, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Crosby led all NHL scorers with 13 points (three goals, 10 assists) in four games. He notched points in each contest, beginning with one goal and one assist in a 5-4 shootout win over the Washington Capitals Dec. 11. He tallied a career-high six points (one goal, five assists) in an 8-4 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers Dec. 13, notched four points (one goal, three assists) in a 6-4 victory over the New York Islanders Dec. 15 and recorded one assist in a 6-3 loss to Montreal Canadiens Dec. 16. Crosby, 19, leads the NHL in scoring with 52 points (16 goals, 36 assists), five ahead of the New York Rangers’ Jaromir Jagr (14+33). The only other teenager to hold the League lead in points at any time in the League’s modern era was Edmonton’s Wayne Gretzky, briefly near the end of the 1979-80 season and early in the 1980-81 campaign.
SECOND STAR -- CHRIS MASON, G, NASHVILLE PREDATORS
Mason backstopped the Predators to four victories, posting a 1.21 goals-against average and .958 save percentage. He stopped 36 of 38 shots in a 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers Dec. 12, made 22 saves and posted his first shutout of the season in a 6-0 victory over the Ottawa Senators Dec. 14, stopped 33 shots and three shootout attempts in a 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues Dec. 16 and made 22 saves in a 2-1 overtime victory over the Blues Dec. 17. Mason is 8-3-1 in 12 consecutive starts for the Predators since Tomas Vokoun suffered a thumb injury Nov. 23.
THIRD STAR -- JAROME IGINLA, RW, CALGARY FLAMES
Iginla recorded eight points (four goals, four assists) as the Flames won two of three games. He tallied a season-high four points (two goals, two assists), including the game-winning goal, in a 5-2 victory over the Minnesota Wild Dec. 12 and posted his second four-point game of the week (two goals, two assists) in a 6-3 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes Dec. 16. Iginla leads the Flames and ranks eighth in NHL scoring with 41 points (20 goals, 21 assists) in 30 games.