Each week, the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) salutes their Players of the Week. The top forward, defenseman, goaltender, and rookie are selected based on their statistics and performance, as determined by the KHL Statistics and Information Bureau. This week, the league recognizes:
Forward of the Week
Nicklas Backstrom of Dynamo Moscow
In two games, the Washington Capitals center put up six points – three goals and three assists – including a game-winning marker and a +3 rating. On the season, the speedy Swede has seven goals and ten assists for 17 points in just 11 games. His amazing 1.54 points per games is the highest among all players in the league.
Here’s his four-point birthday night against Severstal, which just happened to be on his 25th birthday. What a way to celebrate!
Defenseman of the Week
Vitaly Proshkin of Salavat Yulaev Ufa
Proshkin scored four points in three games – one goal and three assists – along with a +3. The 36-year-old veteran, in his sixth season with Salavat, has three goals and 11 helpers for 14 points in 30 games played this year.
Goaltender of the Week
Edgars Masalskis of Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk
Masalskis went 2-0 last week, allowing an average of 0.95 goals per game with a 97.2% save percentage. This is a huge turnaround for the Latvian netminder, who is 8-8 on the season with a 3.06 goals against average. More play like this will help Yugra get back in to playoff position.
Here’s a spectacular save from last week’s game against the KHL’s current leading scorer, Sergei Mozyakin of Manitogorsk:
Rookie of the Week
Andrei Mironov of Dynamo Moscow
The rookie defenseman had one assist and a +5 rating while averaging 18:11 of ice time in two game. The 18-year-old Russian has two points on the season. He also made his mark earlier this season with one of the KHL’s top ten hits of the week — he was number one with a dangerously-low hip check:
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, has 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.