Malkin Leads KHL Players of the Month for December

The Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) recognizes the top forward, defenseman, goaltender, and rookie each month.  Selections are made by the KHL Statistics and Information Bureau based upon both statistical results and overall performance.  The December winners are:

Forward of the Month

Evgeni Malkin, Metallurg Magnitogorsk

Malkin scored 25 points – eight goals and 17 assists – in just nine games, along with a +15 for the month. He’s second in the league in overall scoring with 59 points. He has a league-leading 40 assists and his 19 goals are tied for the second-highest total in the league.  Here’s one from Malkin that made the KHL’s Top 10 Goals last week:

And a classic one-timer blast from the right circle:

On a side note, Magnitogorsk really ended the month (and 2012) on a high note.   They won their last two matches, against Metallurg Novokuznetsk and HC Amur, by a combined score of 13-0.

 

Defenseman of the Month

Sergei Gonchar, Metallurg Magnitogorsk

The 38-year-old blueliner scored one goal and added ten assists in nine games, along with a plus-minus rating of +11 for the month.  On the season, he has three goals and 25 assists for 28 points, placing him third among defensemen in scoring.  He has a plus-minus rating of +17 and 40 penalty minutes in 35 games played.   He also has collected at least one shattered pane of glass:

 

 

Goaltender of the Month

Karri Ramo, Avangard Omsk

Ramo posted three shutouts in seven games, stopping 95.7% of shots faced and averaging 1.15 goals allowed per game.  On the season, the Finnish netminder has a 2.01 goals against average, a 92.6% save percentage, and three shutouts.  This is Ramo’s fourth season in the KHL with Avangard.  Here’s Ramo going post-to-post on HC Donbass:

 

Rookie of the Month

Alexander Sharychenkov, Dynamo Moscow

The rookie netminder won five of seven starts, stopping 90.01% of shots faced while allowing an average of 2.4 goals per game. He came within 6 seconds of a shutout against Khabarovsk before Nikita Gusev scored to ruin the goaltender’s perfect night. Sharychenkov has gone 6-1 this season with a 2.08 goals against average and a 92.0% save percentage. Here’s Sharychenkov slamming the door on Vaclav Nedorost of HC Donbass:

Josh Smith
Josh is a life-long hockey fan. He grew up as a fan of the New York Rangers, but thanks to their general mismanagement and years of mediocrity, developed a great appreciation for every team across the league. He’s been writing about hockey on various sites since 1995. In addition to his work at The Hockey Writers, he also keeps tabs on the referees over at ScoutingTheRefs.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joshsmith29 or reach him via email at joshuasmithTHW-at-gmail.com.
Josh Smith
RT @Dejan_Kovacevic: Crazy that's not a penalty shot. This league has absolutely no guideline for a penalty shot anymore. - 1 day ago

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