Los Angeles Kings center Jeff Carter, Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward, and Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week.
FIRST STAR – JEFF CARTER, C, LOS ANGELES KINGS
Carter paced the NHL with three game-winning tallies – and also tied for the League lead with four total goals (4-2—6) – in four outings to propel the Kings (10-9-1, 21 points) into a share of first place, in terms of points, in the Pacific Division.
After being held off the scoresheet in a 4-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche Nov. 15, Carter scored the decisive goal in three consecutive outings: a 4-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers Nov. 17 (1-1—2), a 4-2 win over the New Jersey Devils Nov. 19 and a 3-2 triumph over the Anaheim Ducks Nov. 20 (2-1—3). In doing so, he became the first Kings player to record the winning goal in three straight team games since Dec. 2-9, 2010 (Anze Kopitar).
The 31-year-old Carter – who eclipsed 600 career points Sunday (316-285—601 in 815 GP) – leads the NHL with five game-winning goals and ranks first on Los Angeles with 9-8—17 in 20 contests this season.
SECOND STAR – CAM WARD, G, CAROLINA HURRICANES
Ward went 3-0-0 with a 1.01 goals-against average, .964 save percentage and one shutout to help the Hurricanes (7-6-4, 18 points) complete a perfect week and extend his, as well as the team’s, overall winning streak to four games.
Ward stopped all 22 shots he faced to pick up his 24th career shutout – and first of the season – in a 1-0 victory over the San Jose Sharks Nov. 15. He then made 31 saves in a 3-2 triumph over the Montreal Canadiens Nov. 18 and 28 saves in a 3-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets Nov. 20. The 32-year-old Saskatoon, Sask., native owns a 6-4-3 record with a 2.36 goals-against average and .916 save percentage in 13 appearances this season.
Ward’s four-game winning streak is his longest since Feb. 16-28, 2015 (also 4-0-0).
THIRD STAR – NICKLAS BACKSTROM, C, WASHINGTON CAPITALS
Backstrom led the NHL with 4-4—8 in four games to power the Capitals (11-5-2, 24 points) to five out of a possible eight standings points. He scored the club’s lone goal in a 2-1 overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets Nov. 15 before matching a career high with 2-3—5, including the decisive tally, in a 7-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins Nov. 16. Backstrom then was held off the scoresheet in a 1-0 triumph over the Detroit Red Wings Nov. 18, but closed the week with 1-1—2 in a 3-2 loss to the Blue Jackets Nov. 20.
The 28-year-old Backstrom paces the Capitals with 12 assists and 17 points in 18 outings this season.
By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services