Top Plays of the Week by Locked-Out NHL Superstars
Another week has passed, and still no major breakthrough on the NHL lockout front. With the arrival of a new NBA season, and college and NFL football in full swing, North American hockey fans can only sit and wonder what could have been this fall.
There's still hope that the NHL will return in 2012-13, but for now, fans will have to settle for some overseas highlights from their favorite stars.
Here, we highlight the top plays of the week from our locked-out NHL superstars.
5. Evgeni Malkin Notches Three Helpers in Win
There's a reason Pittsburgh Penguins star Evgeni Malkin took home NHL MVP honors last season. Not only can Malkin score almost at will, but he is one of the most unselfish players in the game today.
Malkin assisted on not one, but three goals this past week to help KHL club Metallurg earn a 5-2 win over Severstal.
4. Ilya Kovalchuk Puts the Dagger in His Old Club
Ilya Kovalchuk has been lighting up the KHL since he ditched the States for Russia following the NHL lockout.
The New Jersey Devils winger is a point-scoring machine, and if you don't believe me, check out this cold-blooded goal against his former youth club, Spartak Moscow, this past week.
Kovalchuk's consistency makes him arguably the best player in hockey. This isn't the first time he's shown up on our top plays, and it won't be the last.
3. Zdeno Chara Lays Out Miroslav Satan (0:55)
NHL fans love Boston Bruins defender Zdeno Chara for his bone-crushing hits and incredible slap shot. This past week, the big bruiser delivered a brutal hit on Slovan's Miroslav Satan.
Chara's club, Lev, lost the game, but his intimidating defense on Satan is worthy of a spot in our top plays of the week.
2. Vladimir Tarasenko Rips It from Way Out (0:14)
St. Louis Blues star Vladimir Tarasenko and SKA St. Petersburg teammate Ilya Kovalchuk have been taking turns making spectacular plays for their KHL club this fall.
This time it was Tarasenko, scoring on an uncontested shot from way out in front of the goalie.
SKA would go on to embarrass Donbass, but Tarasenko's strike was without question the best moment of the scoring frenzy.
1. Patrick Kane Makes It Look Easy (0:48)
American hockey sensation Patrick Kane has been showcasing his talent on the ice for Swiss club EHC Biel this fall, and goals like this one against EV Zug show why the 23-year-old is one of the up-and-coming stars in the sport.
Watch as Kane, who plays for the NHL's Chicago Blackhawks, drifts in and slides the puck right past the goalie for the go-ahead score.
If only reaching a new CBA was that easy.
Locked-Out NHL Leaders Overseas
It's no wonder Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin won the Hart Memorial Trophy last season in the NHL. The 26-year-old star is setting the KHL on fire this fall. He's the league's third-leading point scorer despite having played in just 18 games since the start of the NHL lockout.
Malkin isn't the only NHL star shining bright overseas, though. Tyler Seguin and Ilya Kovalchuk are just two of the big names making their presence felt across the pond this fall.
*Statistics include NHL players who are playing in the KHL or Switzerland's National League A.
Top Five Point Leaders
|Player||Points||Current Club||NHL Club|
|Damien Brunner||28||EV Zug||Detroit Red Wings|
|Evgeni Malkin||28||Metallurg||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||26||SKA St. Petersburg||New Jersey Devils|
|Linus Omark||26||EV Zug||Edmonton Oilers|
|Tyler Seguin||23||EHC Biel||Boston Bruins|
Top Five Goal Leaders
|Player||Goals||Current Club||NHL Club|
|Tyler Seguin||13||EHC Biel||Boston Bruins|
|Damien Brunner||11||EV Zug||Detroit Red Wings|
|Vladimir Tarasenko||10||SKA St. Petersburg||St. Louis Blues|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||9||SKA St. Petersburg||New Jersey Devils|
|Rick Nash||9||HC Davos||New York Rangers|
Top Five Assist Leaders
|Player||Assists||Current Club||NHL Club|
|Evgeni Malkin||20||Metallurg||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|Linus Omark||19||EV Zug||Edmonton Oilers|
|Damien Brunner||17||EV Zug||Detroit Red Wings|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||17||SKA St. Petersburg||New Jersey Devils|
|Pavel Datsyuk||13||CSKA Moscow||Detroit Red Wings|
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