It’s been a roaring start for the Colorado Avalanche’s top line this year, and their success hasn’t gone unnoticed.
The league announced on Monday that Rantanen was third star for the week, joining centers Sidney Crosby and Mark Scheifele as the most impressive players in the NHL for the last seven days.
Crosby topped the list after finally getting himself in gear, scoring all five of the goals he’s managed this month and putting up seven points in just three games. His efforts were good to shoot Pittsburgh up the standings to the lead in the Metro, and helped the team put up one of the most dominant Western Canada road trips anyone has seen in years.
Scheifele earned himself a spot as well with a seven-point week, including a four-point game — but then the Avalanche got their weekly attention through their youngest player on the top line, as Rantanen’s league-leading dominance garnered some attention.
The Finnish forward currently leads the NHL in scoring, boasting a whopping 21 points through his first 12 games of the season. Only Evgeni Malkin is scoring at a faster rate, and Rantanen’s 15 primary points on the year are third to only his own teammate in Nathan MacKinnon and the wildly resurgent Patrick Kane:
#NHL Primary Points Leaders.#Blackhawks Kane #GoAvsGo Best Line in Hockey#LeafsForever Marner, Matthews#NHLBruins Pastrnak #Preds Forsberg#LetsGoOilers McDavid#SJSharks Couture#CBJ Panarin#LetsGoPens Malkin?#Flames Gaudreau pic.twitter.com/IemnzvTbp2— Goals Against (@GA_per60) October 29, 2018
To snag the third star honors, Rantanen had a seven-point week over a four-game sample size, helping the Avalanche earn two wins to pull to second in the ultra-competitive Central Division behind only the Nashville Predators. They’re tied in points with the Central leaders, sitting second only by virtue of one additional game played and one fewer regulation/overtime win.
It’s hard to tell just how sustainable Colorado’s current results are, particularly given how top-heavy their scoring remains. For now, though, it’s good to see the team both performing well and getting rewarded for it.