The NHL released their Three Stars of the Week earlier today, and to absolutely no one’s surprise Alex Ovechkin received the top honors. Ovechkin recorded back-to-back hat tricks last week and seven goals total in his three games, giving him 29 on the season. That puts him on a pace for a career-high, something unthinkable for the 33-year old winger. Ovechkin now has 636 career tallies, and should challenge some of the all-time leaders in the category before he’s finished.
While Ovechkin is racking up his usual accolades, two young centers are trying to carve out their own legacies in the NHL. Mark Scheifele and Jack Eichel were second and third stars respectively, after outstanding weeks. Scheifele especially was a dominant offensive presence, recording 11 points in just four games for the Winnipeg Jets including two overtime winners.
- Pekka Rinne was expecting retirement after the 2018-19 season. That’s what the goaltender told Alex Prewitt in his latest profile for Sports Illustrated. The Nashville Predators goaltender believed that he would sail off into the sunset after his current seven-year $49MM deal expired at the end of this year, but that all changed when he inked a new two-year extension in November. Rinne is still playing at an incredible level, and going into tonight led the league with a .929 save percentage and 1.96 goals against average. That puts him in prime position to challenge for the Vezina Trophy once again, an award he took home last season after previously finishing as a finalist three times.
- Mathew Dumba is off to an exceptional start for the Minnesota Wild, with 12 goals and 22 points in just 32 games. The right-handed defenseman also doesn’t shy away from the physical side of the game, as seen this weekend when he took on Matthew Tkachuk of the Calgary Flames in a round of fisticuffs. Unfortunately, Dumba will now be out for at least a week with an upper-body injury. Head coach Bruce Boudreau wouldn’t give much more information on the subject, but did note that it’s not necessarily the worst timing for the team given the holiday break that they’ll enjoy next week.