Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 04/02/12 at 02:11 PM ET
NEW YORK (April 2, 2012) – Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and Buffalo Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller have been named the NHL’s ‘Three Stars’ for the month of March.
FIRST STAR – ILYA BRYZGALOV, G, PHILADELPHIA FLYERS
Bryzgalov went 10-2-1 with a 1.43 goals-against average, .947 save percentage and League-high four shutouts as the Flyers (46-24-9, 101 points) moved within one point of the Pittsburgh Penguins for the fourth seed, and home-ice advantage, in the Eastern Conference. He won his first seven starts of the month and became the first Flyer to pick up four shutouts in a five-game span. Bryzgalov recorded three consecutive blank sheets March 8-13 and set a franchise record with a 249:43 shutout streak. In total, he allowed two goals or fewer in 11 of 13 starts. The Togliatti, Russia native is 32-15-7 with a 2.46 goals-against average, .910 save percentage and six shutouts in 57 appearances.
SECOND STAR – EVGENI MALKIN, C, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Malkin led all skaters with 23 points (11 goals, 12 assists) in 15 games to help the Penguins (48-25-6, 102 points) complete an 11-3-1 month and remain fourth in the Eastern Conference. The 25-year-old recorded points in 12 of 15 contests, including seven multi-point efforts. Malkin posted his fourth five-point game of the season with two goals and three assists March 20 against the Winnipeg Jets, making him the first NHL player to record five or more points at least four times in one season since 1995-96. The 2008-09 Art Ross Trophy winner leads the League with 104 points and ranks second with 48 goals, a career high, in 72 games. He has 3-6—9 during a five-game point streak that dates to March 25.
THIRD STAR – RYAN MILLER, G, BUFFALO SABRES
Miller compiled a 10-3-2 record with a 2.17 goals-against average, .930 save percentage and two shutouts as the Sabres (38-31-10, 86 points) pulled within two points of the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. He won five straight starts March 19-27 and went 10 consecutive games without suffering a regulation defeat (March 7-27, 8-0-2). The 2009-10 Vezina Trophy winner is 30-20-7 with a 2.51 goals-against average and .917 save percentage in 59 games, and has established a career high with six shutouts. He is 19-5-5 and has five shutouts in his last 29 decisions dating to Jan. 24.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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