Wow, there were a lot of great performances to choose from last night. There was drama in Calgary surrounding the Sean Avery Sloppy Seconds controversy. In San Jose Ron Wilson was coming back to coach against his former team for the first time, and in Montreal the Canadiens were doing their best not to blow a big lead against the lowly Atlanta Thrashers. So who were the best players amidst all this chaos? Read on to find out:
3rd Star – Marty Turco – Let’s face it, this hasn’t been the greatest start to the season for either the Dallas Stars or Marty Turco, but in spite of the distraction selfishly provided by Dallas Star Sean Avery the Dallas Stars put together a solid road game, and Turco really brought his A game, stopping 36 pucks to help him team to a 3-1 victory over the red hot Calgary Flames.
2nd Star – Ron Hainsey – This Atlanta Thrashers D-man used to play for the Montreal Canadiens so maybe he had a little extra motivation for their game last night against his old club. Montreal dominated the first two periods, and looked to be home and cooled with a 3-0 lead going into the third, but Hainsey and his teammates made things interesting. Hainsey scored 2 goals 52 seconds apart to start the rally, and teammate Patrick Thorburn tied the game just 7 seconds later. The 3 goals in 59 seconds were a Thrasher club record. Montreal rallied to take the lead 5-3 again, but Hainsey was at it again, helping to set up another goal to get the Thrashers within 1 with 20 seconds remaining. Unfortunately for the Atlanta faithful that is close as they would come, but Hainsey’s 2 goal, 1 assist performance from defense easily qualifies him for a spot on last night’s NHL 3 stars.
1st Star – Joe Thornton – Jumbo Joe Thornton is a star most night he plays, but he was especially dominant in last night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. No doubt Thornton was extra motivated playing against Ron Wilson, his old coach, and that motivation showed on the ice. Thornton scored a goal, and added three helpers to help the unstoppable Sharks to an easy 5-2 win over the leafs.