No NHL player has outscored the Penguins' Evgeni Malkin since the calendar flipped to 2018. As a result, he continues to gather accolades to reflect his offensive surge. Today the NHL named him its 'Third Star' for the week ending March 11.
The NHL's second-leading scorer this season with 87 points (39G-48A), Malkin tied for the NHL lead last week with eight points (3G-5A) in four games. His assist total was tied for second-most, and his three tallies tied for third-most. Overall this season, Malkin's 87 points trail league-leader Nikita Kucherov of Tampa Bay by one.
Already a two-time NHL scoring champion (2009 & 2012), Malkin is vying to become just the ninth player in the history of the NHL to win three or more scoring crowns.
Malkin has been the NHL's most-dominating offensive force in the 2018 calendar year, leading all players in both goals (25) and points (51) in that span. His 51 points are 10 more than the next-closest player, teammate Sidney Crosby (41). Malkin's 26 assists are fourth-best.
A 25-goal scoring spree in his past 30 games has thrust Malkin into the mix for the NHL goal-scoring crown as well. On Sunday evening, he registered his 39th goal of the season, putting him one behind NHL co-goal-scoring leaders Alex Ovechkin and Patrik Laine.
It's already the fourth time this season that Malkin has been honored with monthly or weekly NHL star honors. He was the league's 'First Star' for January, then followed that up by capturing its 'Second Star' in February. Malkin also won 'First Star' honors for the first week of February.
Heading into Monday's games, Malkin was tied for the NHL lead in March with 11 points (3G-8A) after picking up at least one assist and point in all six of his appearances this month. His eight assists in March also paced the league.
Last month, Malkin tied for the NHL lead in points in February with 21, and was third in goals with 10. During the month of January, Malkin led the NHL with 12 goals, and only Crosby (21 points) had more points than Malkin's 19.
Further illustrating Malkin's dominance in 2018, he has picked up at least one point in 24 of 30 games; at least two points in 16 of 30 contests; and three or more points in nine of 30 games.
Malkin, who surpassed the 900-point plateau in February, leaped Pavel Datsyuk for fifth place on the NHL's all-time scoring list among Russian-born players when Malkin collected his 919th career point against Dallas.