MINNESOTA’S FERNANDEZ IS NHL’S TOP DEFENSIVE PLAYER
NEW YORK/TORONTO (Jan. 2, 2006) – Minnesota goaltender Manny Fernandez, who
backstopped the Wild to three wins with a 2.00 goals-against average and
.931 save percentage, is the National Hockey League’s Defensive Player of the Week.
Goaltenders Roberto Luongo of the Florida Panthers
(3-0-0, 1.96 GAA) and Chris Osgood of the Detroit Red Wings (2-0-0, 1.50
GAA) were runners-up for the defensive award.
Fernandez began the week by making 27 saves as the Wild defeated the
Edmonton Oilers 4-1 on Dec 26. On Dec. 28, he made 28 saves as Minnesota
defeated Edmonton again 4-2. On Dec. 31 he made 26 saves as the Wild
defeated the Vancouver Canucks 4-3.
Appearing in 23 of Minnesota’s 39 games this season Fernandez has
posted a record of 14-5-3, a 2.05 goals-against average and .930 save
percentage. The Wild are 11th in the Western Conference with 40 points
(18-17-4) and travel to Detroit where they meet the Red Wings tomorrow at
the Joe Louis Arena.