Pavelec, Byfuglien NHL’s top two stars of the week

The Thrashers nearly cornered the market on the NHL’s stars of the week.

Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec was named the league’s first star for the week ending Sunday. Defenseman Dustin Byfuglien was named the second star.

“They certainly earned it,” Thrashers coach Craig Ramsay said. “I think they’ve both been brilliant. Our team has played well. Even through that when the team plays well, someone needs to step up and be a special player and they’ve both done it throughout this homestand.”

The Thrashers have won five straight, including wins this week over Detroit, Montreal and Boston. He’s stopped 97 of 99 shots in those three wins. Pavelec lowered his season goals-against average to 1.62 and improved his save percentage to .949, both third in the NHL.

“More important is winning the games,” Pavelec said. “It’s nice but it’s a team sport and you can do that without your teammates.”

Byfuglien had six points (two goals, four assists), including his league-leading fifth game-winning goal of the season. He leads all defensemen in goals (9) and points (25).

In other news:

* Rookie forward Alexander Burmistrov did not practice with the team Monday prior to leaving for Denver for Tuesday’s game against the Avalanche. He will make the trip and Ramsay said there is a good chance Burmistrov will play.

Burmistrov missed most of the third period of Sunday’s win over Boston after taking a boarding call.

“He will travel,” Ramsay said. “There is a real good chance that he’ll be able to play. Certainly they want to take care and give him rest. We’ve played a lot of hockey and it’s been very intense hockey. It certainly doesn’t hurt a guy like Burmy to take a day off.”

* Ramsay said the Thrashers will call up a player as a precaution to meet the team in Denver.

If Burmistrov is unable to play, and the Thrashers call up a winger, Nik Antropov would move back to center.

* Although not close to playing with a rib injury, Fredrik Modin will make the road trip with them team. He has missed the past six games but has begun practicing. He was on the ice the entire practice Monday.

“It’s not like he’s ready to play but he’s moving forward,” Ramsay said. “We can get him some ice time on day-of-game skates and have him as part of the team. We want him around.”

* The Thrashers line combinations remained the same Monday with defenseman Freddy Meyer taking Burmistrov’s spot as a forward.

19 comments Add your comment

Mike

November 29th, 2010
1:34 pm

No offense to Modin, but I’m hoping when he’s better, he’s still scratched. Everybody is working so well right now that I’d hate to see anything changed up.

Barry

November 29th, 2010
1:57 pm

Ya keep the Greek God line together. No need to break them up when Modin starts playing again. They have been doing their thing ever since they were put together. It seems all the lines are clicking and rolling good right now. There is really no need to really jumble the lines anymore unless a line just starts growing stale and not producing. Like we say here in the south, “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”.

kracker

November 29th, 2010
2:00 pm

Wow! First and second stars for the week! I can’t recall that ever happening w/ Kovy & Hossa…maybe Kovy & Heatley.

kracker

November 29th, 2010
2:05 pm

Modin will have to wait until somebody gets dinged up to get in the lineup. Hopefully for spot duty only. He’s getting paid on the NHL roster, so I expect he will either play or be the designated scratch.

DWTOO

November 29th, 2010
2:22 pm

Congrats to Buff and Pavs! Who votes on the stars? Certainly not the Canadian media.

And don’t call me Shirley (RIP Leslie Nielsen you were one of the best).

Flames

November 29th, 2010
2:37 pm

Good Things are happening in Blueland!!!!!! Congrats to them both…. I have to agree with everyone else. I think Modin needs to be a healthy scratch until someone needs a break or gets injured. We need to make sure Big Buff gets into the NHL All-Star game and represents the team….

fishook

November 29th, 2010
2:39 pm

Too bad there are usually only about 7,000 – 8,000 fans per game watching them play.

Puck Like A Porn Star

November 29th, 2010
3:10 pm

People are really bad-mouthing hockey on Schultz’s new blog about the four major Atlanta teams being playoff eligible at the moment. Any “sports fan” that not only doesn’t like hockey, but needs to bag on it, just had his sports fan card and man card revoked. If anyone should be able to appreciate hockey, a football fan should, but the ones in this part of the country are just too stupid.

Philalamo

November 29th, 2010
3:34 pm

The problem is the ownership. They just don’t care.

Going to a game at Philips arena is depressing. Have of the vendors are understaffed, understocked or closed. They don’t bother turning half of the scoreboards or other monitors on. Season ticket holders are treated like garbage. One would think they would be trying a little harder, but it is clear that they just don’t care.

The team and the fans deserve better.

Go Thrashers.

Derrick

November 29th, 2010
3:47 pm

DWTOO Actually tsn.ca has had the Thrashers all over it today. They have a story about the Thrashers from a fantasy hockey point of view, one about Pavs and Buf being the top 2 stars and they moved they up to number 4 in the NHL in their weekly power rankings and most of the comments I’ve seen on there lately by fans have been positive which is something you almost never used to see. It’s a great day to be a Thrashers fan!

Derrick

November 29th, 2010
3:51 pm

Oh and by the way congrats to Pavs and Big Buff!! Honors well earned!!

Matt

November 29th, 2010
5:38 pm

Chris-you are a blogging MACHINE today!! Kudos for your hard work. Congrats to Pavs and Buff on a richly deserved honor.

DB

November 29th, 2010
5:43 pm

@Philalamo, based on my visit last week, food options look better on the non-club side. It appears that they have “allowed” the vendors from the club side to open locations on the non-club side. The downside is Philips is getting a run down feel. The main video scoreboard needs replacing.

Brendan

November 29th, 2010
5:53 pm

Congrats to both Pavelec and Byfuglien. Like Coach said, “they earned it.”

sisu

November 29th, 2010
6:42 pm

What a great way to end the successful homestand, nice to see individual awards, Pavs has played lights out. Funny how the team turned things around so quickly, now as they learn the system even more it will be fun to see where this season will take us as fans :)

Lou

November 30th, 2010
12:03 am

I have been to 6 Thrasher home games and went Sunday with my kids. During the past four home games John Kincaide during one of the timeouts mentioned come Sunday between 330p and 430p and get SELECT concessions for a dollar. I figured I would come a little early and try to take advantage of that since the prices are OUTRAGEOUS at the arena. When I walked into the arena at 350pm, I asked two ushers what was a doller since there were no signs anywhere. They told me just cokes. I said what kind of concession is that? I said it has to be more than that, who can I talk to? They sent me to guest relations. There were four guys there straight out of their senior year in college who told me it was soft drinks and hot dogs which was one MORE thing than the ushers. I said what about peanuts, or popcorn or pretzels and they said no. I go to one of the places and order a hot dog. I have to wait like ten minutes for one hot dog. When it comes, the guy behind the counter actually says the bun will probably be cold. I said that’s unacceptable, please get me a hot one. He comes back with a much better hot dog and bun. I ask him if anything there is a dollar. He says just drinks and the dog. When I walk away there is a woman standing there with a clipboard and she has a shirt that says Philips Arena. When I ask her what is a dollar, she says cokes, hot dogs, pretzels, popcorn and peanuts. I said how come no one here knows that? UNREAL! It is now too late to get back in the line and at this point I cannot tell you how many people were complaining that no one knew anything at the arena which is absurd. At this point I was now out of the line and couldn’t get a snack. As I was walking to my seat I saw a guy coming with two trays of pretzels and asked if I could buy one for a dollar? He said they are selling for a dollar but I would have to get in line. I said I have spent the better part of a half hour in line already. He would not budge. I just cannot believe someone with the Atlanta Spirit or the arena didn’t send emails to their employees or at least before the game tell the employees what was what. It was a debacle. Don’t advertise things if you are not prepared to deliver.

kracker

November 30th, 2010
9:27 am

Oh, and the debate, not that there really was one since the coach makes the decisions, about Buff playing Forward or Defenseman is now over. With Buff as a d-man we get the best of both: a tatented fourth forward who is also a burly, mobile defenseman that can go shoulder-to-shoulder with Chara, Pronger or anyone else.

Gwinnett Fred

November 30th, 2010
10:33 am

I love to go to games. Try to get to 10-12 a year with my daughter, but have to agree with folks pointing out that the “game day experience”, in a word – SUCKS.

When the team isn’t at a level of consistent good play (I truly think we’re getting there, but…) then the team HAS to provide a great atmosphere because that is the ONE THING that CAN be controlled and it just isn’t happening.

No better model to use than Arthur Blank & the Falcons. When he bought the team he immediately got involved with fan’s wants, needs & expectations and DID SOMETHING ABOUT IT.

This brings me back full circle with the folks that point straight at the ASG ownership. One franchise with a REAL OWNER takes flight and is a Super Bowl contender while another franchise with a combination of stooges for owners falls apart.

Very Sad!

Dwayne

November 30th, 2010
4:13 pm

Just a thought, avoid all concessions when at Philips, I know it is a little difficult with kids, do the drink and eat thing before you going inside the rink area. And this is just an opinion, but tell the kids, “no” when they want to go get something else during the game. Take them to the potty between periods and if they are good, you will treat them to an ice cream after the game or at a later date. I had 3 daughters this worked with and it works with my 5 grandchildren. Now, if you are going with friends and a DD, sneak in a flask of your favorite adult beverage and enjoy.