Islanders' Ilya Sorokin named NHL 'Third Star' of the week

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Ilya Sorokin Coyotes
Ilya Sorokin Coyotes

For the first time in his career, Ilya Sorokin has been named the NHL’s “Third Star” of the week.

The 26-year-old joined Kyle Connor of the Winnipeg Jets and Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers after recording back-to-back shutouts in back-to-back days against the Coyotes and Golden Knights over the weekend — something no other goaltender in Islanders history has accomplished.

In four games last week, Sorokin recorded 136 saves on 140 shots culminated by a career-high 42 saves against the Knights on Sunday. His six consecutive starts to begin the season is another career high for the former 78th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Oct 14, 2021; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin (30) stops the scoring attempt by Carolina Hurricanes center Jesperi Kotkaniemi (82) during the second period at PNC Arena.
Oct 14, 2021; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin (30) stops the scoring attempt by Carolina Hurricanes center Jesperi Kotkaniemi (82) during the second period at PNC Arena.

In six games this season, the second-year netminder now has just one fewer shutouts than he did in 22 games played last season (21 starts).

Sorokin’s shutouts in back-to-back days is only the 22nd instance in NHL history and the first in six years. He’s the first Isles goaltender to start both games of a two-day set since Robin Lehner in 2019 and it’s the second time he’s recorded a shutout in consecutive appearances.

At 3-2-1 and aided by Sorokin’s 2.33 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage, the Islanders are off to their best six-game start in four years.