The NHL has released their three stars of the week, and leading the list is Jon Marchessault. The Vegas Golden Knights forward had nine points in three games, helping his team takeover first place in the Pacific Division. The Golden Knights now sit at 15-6-1 this season, and rank third in the entire NHL in goal differential at +15. Marchessault, a 30-goal scorer last season, is once again turning out to be one of the biggest bargains in the entire league. At just $750K this season, he’s primed for quite the raise in free agency at the end of the year.
Sergei Bobrovsky and Alex Ovechkin round out the top three after impressive weeks of their own. Bobrovsky went 3-0 with a .950 save percentage with the Columbus Blue Jackets, while Ovechkin tallied five more goals including a hat trick against the Toronto Maple Leafs with a special guest looking on. Ovechkin, who many said was slowing down last season when he scored “just” 33 goals, is back on top of the NHL leaderboards with 18 this season. With the first goal of the hat trick, Ovechkin passed Mike Bossy for 21st all-time in NHL goal scoring, and has a legitimate shot at breaking 600 this season. He needs just 24 more to 20th member of the 600 club, and won’t turn 33 until next September.
- Jacob Josefson had only returned to the Buffalo Sabres lineup recently, but will be out another four to six weeks according to head coach Phil Housley. Josefson tweaked his ankle and is out until at least Christmas for the struggling Sabres, who are now just one point ahead of the Arizona Coyotes for last in the entire league. Obviously, Josefson isn’t a huge part of their lineup but any injury at this point pushes Buffalo further away from any rebound this season. The team has a dreadful schedule over the next week, playing the Tampa Bay Lightning tomorrow before taking on Pittsburgh in a home-and-home series this weekend.
- Steve Mason was removed from Saturday’s game with an upper-body injury, and today Winnipeg Jets head coach Paul Maurice confirmed the injury was a concussion. Mason had been placed on injured reserve earlier today after a recall of Eric Comrie. Signed in the offseason to a two-year, $8.2MM contract, Mason has provided below-average netminding so far for the Jets and had been all but replaced by Connor Hellebuyck as the starter. It’ll be tough to justify his $4.1MM contract next season if he remains a backup, especially given that Hellebuyck is a restricted free agent and looks primed for a long-term deal. If Mason doesn’t turn his play around after returning from this head injury, he could be an early candidate for a summer buyout. First off, he’ll have to get healthy enough to return.