A little slow on the draw today. Unfortunately my real job intruded on my hockey blogging. Still, better late than never right? There were some pretty impressive performances last night, and there were at least 10 players that I considered for this list, but in my opinion these 3 were just a little bit better. Here are my picks for the top 3 players from last night’s action:
3rd Star – Craig Anderson – To be honest you probably won’t see this guy on the NHL three star list very often, not because he doesn’t deserve it, but just because he never plays! He put in another solid effort between the pipes last night, making 45 saves to preserve a hard-fought 2-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres. It’s too bad this guy doesn’t get more playing time. He has only lost 1 game so far this season, he leads the league with a sparkling .947 save percentage, and his stingy 1.89 GAA puts him third in the league in that category. Tomas Vokoun better watch out, his starting job might just be in jeopardy.
2nd Star – Sidney Crosby – Now here is a guy you can expect to see on the NHL 3 stars list on a regular basis. After a bit of a slow start, Sidney Crosby has been on fire lately, and he continued his hot streak last night, putting up 4 assists to help the Penguins down Carolina 5-2 last night. It will be interesting to see if Crosby’s fellow Pen, Evgeni Malkin can hold on to his precarious perch atop the scoring race, or whether Crosby will reel him in.
1st Star – Martin Hanzal – One of Phoenix’s “players of the future” cracks the top spot on today’s NHL 3 star list. The highly touted Czech has been a little inconsistent over the early portion of his career, but he put it all together last night, scoring Phoenix’s first 3 goals as the Coyotes torched the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-3. Hopefully for Gretzky and crew the hat-trick builds the confidence of this young player. He has a ton of talent, but just hasn’t quite managed to reach his potential yet.