If it seems like Drew Stafford can't miss lately, there's a reason. He can't. The Buffalo Sabres winger has posted hat tricks in two of his last three games -- and has remarkably netted all six of his shots on goal in that stretch. The best run of Stafford's career earned him the NHL's No. 2 Star of the Week, the league announced Monday. Stafford posted a hat trick in Tuesday's 7-4 win at Tampa Bay and added another in Sunday's 7-6 overtime loss to the New York Islanders. He leads the league with four tricks this season. "Some of my shots, if you want to call them that, I was just kind of parked in front of the net," Stafford said Monday in HSBC Arena. "You just hang around the net and pucks are hanging around there. They were not exactly shots per se. "It's a pretty good stat though. I guess you guys have your stats. That's pretty cool. You don't see that too often. Not sure I can keep it going but I'll do my best." Stafford has 23 goals on the season, one ahead of Thomas Vanek for the team lead, and has improved to second place in the NHL in shooting percentage at 20.9 percent (23 of 110). Sergei Kostitsyn of Nashville is the leader at 23.8. Stafford is just ahead of NHL goal leader Steven Stamkos of Tampa Bay, who has 40 goals and a 20.3 percentage. Stafford is the fourth NHL player with at least four hat tricks in one season since the lockout, joining San Jose's Jonathan Cheechoo in 2005-06 (five), Vanek in 2007-08 (four) and Carolina's Eric Staal in 2008-09 (four). Stafford has battled injuries this season and has played just 36 games. Projected over an full 82-game season, he'd be on a 52-goal pace.
Stafford's big week earns him league honor
Buffalo News | Feb 15