This past week couldn't have gotten much better for the Texas Stars. They had two back-to-back games on the road against the Abbotsford Heat (the top team in the AHL at the time) and came away with three out of four points. They've gotten 10 out of 14 points since the beginning of December and have been on roll since mid-November.
The Stars outplayed the Heat in both games and probably would have won the second game if not for the goaltending of Barry Brust (he stopped 39 of 40 shots). He was able to hold on to beat Jack Campbell and the Stars in the shootout.
Campbell and Cristopher Nilstorp split the two games and both guys did well. Nilstorp saved 20 of 21 shots in the Stars 3-1 win while Campbell saved 25 of 26 shots. It's one of Campbell's best games of the year sothat was really good to see as he had been struggling for the past month.
It was another week and another goal for Reilly Smith as he continues to play very well in December. He now has four goals in December and his six points this month has doubled his yearly total.
Cody Eakin had a goal and two assists last week and he now has a three games point streak. He has a point in five of the last six games and continues to lead the team in points with 18 (which really isn't all that much). No Stars player is in the top-60 in the AHL in scoring so it's good to see this team succeeding as a team.
Dec. 19 - San Antonio Rampage @ Texas Stars
Dec. 21 - Texas Stars @ OKC Barons
Dec. 22 - Texas Stars @ OKC Barons
The Overseas Pros
Note: Just about all European leagues had last week off so there's not much to write here.
Jamie Benn - Hamburg Freezers
The DEL was the one league in Europe that didn't go on a holiday but as luck would have it, the Freezers somehow had no games scheduled last week. Benn returned to North America during that time and should be back in Germany this week as the NHL lockout is still in full effect.
There were some rumblings that he might stick around here until after New Year's so who knows. Hamburg has three games this week so it'll be interesting to see if he suits up.
Season totals: 19 games, 7 goals, 13 assists, 30 PIM, +8 rating
Dec. 18 - ERC Ingolstadt @ Hamburg Freezers
Dec. 21 - Ausburger Panther @ Hamburg Freezers
Dec. 23 - Hamburg Freezers @ Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers
Jaromir Jagr - HC Kladno
A week of rest should only make Jagr more unstoppable as he spends the week soaking in the fountain of youth. He enters this week with eight goals and nine assists in his last 11 games.
Season totals: 24 games, 18 goals, 25 assists, 24 PIM, +15 rating
Dec. 19 - Kladno vs Pardubice
Dec. 21 - Kladno vs Chomutov
Dec. 23 - Kladno vs Ceske Budejovice
Loui Eriksson - HC Davos
Loui has only had a short debut week of hockey so far this year so it's good to see him back on the ice. He certainly didn't need the rest last week and has to be itching to go again.
Season totals: 2 games, 1 goal, 0 assists, 0 PIM, +1 rating
Dec. 18 - Davos vs Servette
Dec. 21 - Davos vs Kloten
Dec. 22 - Davos vs Zug
Tom Wandell - Severstal Cherepovets
Expect more of the same from Wandell this week. Lot's of ice time and not too much on the scoresheet.
Season totals: 21 games, 1 goal, 7 assists, 12 PIM, -3 rating
Dec. 20 - Severstal Cherepovets vs Vityaz Chekhov
Dec. 22 - Severstal Cherepovets vs Dinamo Minsk
Philip Larsen - Rauman Lukko
Just one game for Larsen this week. Larsen and his team have much of next week off as well for Christmas so this will be the only game played from Dec. 9 till Dec. 27.
Season totals: 21 games, 5 goals, 7 assists, 22 PIM, +9 rating
Dec. 18 - Lukko vs Jokerit
Stephane Robidas - HIFK Helsinki
Robidas' contract ran out with Helsinki and the team chose not to bring him back. Thus, the Stephane Robidas overseas experiment is over and done with.
Final season totals: 15 games, 2 goals, 3 assists, 22 PIM, -11 rating