New York Islanders right wing Michael Grabner, Buffalo Sabres right wing Drew Stafford
and Phoenix Coyotes goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov have been named the NHL's 'Three Stars' for the week ending Feb. 13.
FIRST STAR -- MICHAEL GRABNER, RW, NEW YORK ISLANDERS
Grabner led the NHL in goals (eight) and points (nine) and posted a +7 rating last week, helping the Islanders (20-29-7) win three games infour starts. Grabner scored one goal in a 5-3 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs Feb. 8, recorded two goals in a 4-3 shootout victory over the Montreal Canadiens Feb. 10, tallied three points (two goals, one assist) in a 9-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins Feb. 11 and finished the week by tallying the first hat trick of his NHL career, including the overtime winner, in a 7-6 victory over the Buffalo Sabres Feb. 13. Grabner increased his season goals total to 24, tying San Jose Sharks forward Logan Couture for the lead among NHL rookies. Winner of the 'Fastest Skater' competition at the 2011 NHL All-Star Weekend in Raleigh two weeks ago, the 23-year-old Villach, Austria native has an active five-game goal streak -- the longest by an NHL rookie since Bobby Ryan of the Anaheim Ducks scored in five consecutive games in January 2009, and the longest by an Islanders rookie since Patrick Flatley had a six-game streak in November 1984.
SECOND STAR -- DREW STAFFORD, RW, BUFFALO SABRES
Stafford notched two more hat tricks, increasing his League-leading season total to four, as the Sabres (26-22-6) continued their surge for playoff berth by earning five of six available points. Stafford scored three goals and posted a +3 rating in a 7-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning Feb. 8 and posted another three-goal, +3 performance in a 7-6 overtime loss to the New York Islanders Feb. 13. Playing in his fifth NHL season, the 25-year-old Milwaukee native leads the Sabres in goals with a career-high 23. He has scored 20 goals, including all four hat tricks, in his past 24 games. Stafford is the fourth NHL player with at least four hat tricks in one season since 2005-2006, joining San Jose's Jonathan Cheechoo in 2005-06 (five), Buffalo's Thomas Vanek
in 2007-08 (four) and Carolina's Eric Staal in 2008-09 (four).
THIRD STAR -- ILYA BRYZGALOV, G, PHOENIX COYOTES
Bryzgalov posted a 3-0-0 record, 1.29 goals-against average, .948 save percentage and one shutout as the Coyotes (29-19-9) climbed to sixth place in the Western Conference standings. Bryzgalov stopped 73 of 77 shots last week, beginning with a 26-save performance in posting his fifth shutout of the season, a 3-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche Feb. 7. He recorded 16 saves in a 3-2 overtime win over the Dallas Stars Feb. 9 and stopped 31 shots plus shootout attempts by Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa in a 3-2 shootout victory over the Chicago Blackhawks Feb. 12 Bryzgalov improved his season record to 23-14-6 with a 2.58 goals-against average, .938 save percentage and five shutouts in 45 appearances.