NEW YORK, NY – Winnipeg Jets left wing Andrew Ladd, New York Rangers center Brad Richards and San Jose Sharks center Logan Couture have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the week ending April 21.
FIRST STAR – ANDREW LADD, LW, WINNIPEG JETS
Ladd led the NHL with eight points and six assists in three games to help the Jets pick up five out of a possible six points in their push for a playoff berth. He recorded three points (2-1—3), plus the shootout clincher, in a 4-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning April 16. Ladd then tied a career high with three assists, including the primary helper on Dustin Byfuglien's overtime winner, in a 4-3 triumph over the Carolina Hurricanes April 18. He capped the week by collecting two assists, including the primary helper on Bryan Little's game-tying goal with 2:01 left in regulation, in a 5-4 shootout loss the New York Islanders April 20. Ladd is currently on a career-high seven-game point streak (4-10—14) that dates to April 4. In 45 games this season, the 27-year-old Maple Ridge, B.C., native leads the Jets in goals (18), assists (28) and points (46).
SECOND STAR – BRAD RICHARDS, C, NEW YORK RANGERS
Richards led the League with four goals and tied for second with seven points in four games as the Rangers earned six out of a possible eight points to remain in the top eight in the Eastern Conference. After being held off the scoresheet in a 4-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers April 16, Richards rebounded with a goal and an assist in a 6-1 win over the Florida Panthers April 18. He recorded his first career hat trick, including the game-winning goal, in an 8-4 victory over the Buffalo Sabres April 19. Richards then closed the week by posting two assists in a 4-1 triumph over the New Jersey Devils April 21. The 32-year-old Murray Harbour, P.E.I., native has played in 43 games this season and ranks third on the Rangers in both points (30) and assists (20).
THIRD STAR – LOGAN COUTURE, C, SAN JOSE SHARKS
Couture totaled 3-3—6, including two game-winning goals, in four games to help put the Sharks on the verge of clinching their ninth consecutive playoff berth. He scored the winning goal in a 4-0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes April 15. Couture then posted a career-high four points (2-2—4), including the game-winner, in a 6-1 triumph over the Minnesota Wild April 18. He finished the week with one assist in a 4-3 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets April 21. In 45 games this season, the 24-year-old Guelph, Ont., native leads the Sharks with 19 goals and ranks second on the team in both points (35) and assists (16).
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