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Messier Named NHL Offensive Player of the Week

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

Two weeks shy of his 43rd birthday, New York Rangers center Mark Messier has been named the NHL's Offensive Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday, January 4.

Messier tallied six points (two goals, four assists) and a +4 rating in four road games as the Rangers posted a 3-1-0-0 record.

The Blueshirt captain captured his sixth career Player of the Week Award and first since December 2, 1996. He tallied a goal and two assists and was +2 in a 3-2 overtime victory on December 29 at Phoenix, notched a goal in a 3-2 overtime victory on December 30 at Los Angeles and collected a pair of assists in a 4-1 victory on January 3 at Pittsburgh.

Messier leads New York with 13 goals and ranks fourth on the club with 23 points (13 goals, 10 assists) in 37 games this season. He also leads the team with two shorthanded goals and three shorthanded points.

Born on January 18, 1961, Messier is the NHL's second-oldest player, after New Jersey Devils center Igor Larionov (December 3, 1960). The Edmonton, Alberta native ranks second on the NHL's all-time games list (1,717) and points list (1,867). Messier also ranks third in assists (1,178) and seventh in goals (689).

Phoenix Coyotes goaltender Brian Boucher, whose three consecutive shutouts extended his unbeaten streak to seven games and scoreless streak to 205:45, has been named the NHL's Defensive Player of the Week.

Undefeated in his past seven starts (4-0-3) since December 4, Boucher has posted a 1.52 goals against average over the span and has stopped 209 of 220 shots for a .950 save percentage.

St. Louis Blues left wing Keith Tkachuk (three goals, four assists in four games) and New York Islanders center Jason Blake (two goals, four assists in four games) were runners-up for offensive honors, while Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jose Theodore (3-0-1, 0.98 goals against average) was runner-up for the defensive award.
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