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by Erin Pollina / Buffalo Sabres
Thomas Vanek (Photo: Getty Images)
[Editor's Note: Stat Count highlights  the Buffalo Sabres accomplishments on the ice in the 2007-08 season. Each week, Stat Count will profile a different player on the team, focusing on their statistical highs. This week centers on forward Thomas Vanek.]

Times in the 2007-08 season Vanek recorded a natural hat trick against the Tampa Bay Lightning, making him the first player to accomplish such a feat since Peter Bondra in 1995-96 against the New York Islanders. Vanek had three-goal efforts against the Lightning on Feb. 20 and Mar. 19.

Hat tricks Vanek scored in 2007-08 to lead the NHL in that category. Atlanta’s Ilya Kovalchuk and Washington’s Alexander Ovechkin ranked second in the League with three hat tricks on the year. The Sabres franchise record for most hat tricks in a single season is held by Alexander Mogilny (1992-93) and Rick Martin (1975-76) with seven.

Times Vanek was credited with the game-winning goal in the 2007-08 campaign, with two victories coming in overtime. The 24 year old has scored 18 game-winning goals in his career.

Power play goals Vanek scored on the year, ranking him second in the NHL behind only Alex Ovechkin (22 PPG). Vanek tallied 24 points with the man-advantage in 2007-08. His previous career-high was in 2006-07 when he net 15 power play goals.

Points scored in February earned Vanek the honor of being named the NHL’s third star for the month. Adding 13 goals and seven helpers in 15 games for the Sabres, the winger helped Buffalo compile an 8-4-3 record. Vanek tallied points in 11 games during the stretch, including six multi-point efforts.
Goals scored by the Austrian native in 2007-08 to lead the Sabres in that category and ranking 13th in the NHL. In addition to capturing the team’s scoring title, Vanek also led Buffalo with 17 goals scored on the road.

Career NHL goal scored by Vanek on Mar. 21 against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Vanek has recorded 104 goals during his three-year tenure in the League.

Career NHL game played on Dec. 29 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Vanek has participated in 245 games since making the Sabres roster in 2005-06, missing only one game through three seasons of play.

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