No. 1 Star: Jeff Carter, Columbus Blue Jackets
Jeff Carter notched his first hat trick as a member of the Blue Jackets, scoring three times in the first period as the Jackets roared out to a 4-1 lead versus the Nashville Predators. Unfortunately, Columbus couldn't hold that lead. Nashville tied the game at 5 late in the third and won it 6-5 with only eight seconds to go in regulation on Martin Erat's breakaway game-winner:
That's gotta hurt.
No. 2 Star: Ondrej Pavelec, Winnipeg Jets
Pavelec stopped all 27 shots the Montreal Canadiens threw at him in a 4-0 win, his third shutout of the season. Blake Wheeler led the way for the Jets, scoring twice and adding an assist. Meanwhile, Randy Cunneyworth to be winless as Canadiens head coach despite his best efforts, which Thursday meant scratching P.K. Subban. Clearly, his players aren't getting his message. If only he were able to deliver portions of it in a second language...
No. 3 Star: James Reimer, Toronto Maple Leafs
For the second game in a row, Reimer stopped 40 shots, allowing the Maple Leafs to leave with a point. Thursday night, he made sure they got two as the Leafs held on for a 3-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres. Phil Kessel was given first star honours after scoring a goal and registering a whopping 10 shots, and Nazem Kadri's first of the season was the game-winner:
Honourable mention: Jordan Eberle had the first and last tallies as the Edmonton Oilers handed the Minnesota Wild their sixth straight loss with a 4-1 win... Columbus's other two goals were scored by Ryan Johansen. Erat added an assist to go with his game-winner... Curtis Glencross scored twice, including the game-winner, as the Calgary Flames knocked off the Detroit Red Wings 3-2... Michael Del Zotto notched the game-winner late in the second period of the New York Rangers 4-2 victory over the New York Islanders... Daniel Alfredsson was in on all three regulation goals in the Ottawa Senators' 4-3 overtime win over the Florida Panthers.
Did you know? Kyle Turris now has a point in each of his 2 games since joining the Sens after picking up an assist on Bobby Butler's game-winner below:
Dishonourable mention: Well, that thing Columbus did isn't ideal. You wonder if Scott Arniel would have axed and left in Nashville if it wasn't three days before Christmas... Nick Foligno was given a 5-minute major for charging and a game misconduct for this collision with Keaton Ellerby, which, upon cursory inspection, seems pretty dumb.