NHL

Datsyuk, Kiprusoff, Hunter are NHL Players of the Month

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New York, NY (Sports Network) - Detroit center and Calgary goaltender have been named NHL Players of the Month for December. Datsyuk earned Offensive Player of the Month honors after leading the league in goals (12) in December. He finished with 23 points and posted a plus-6 rating as the compiled a 9-3-2-1 record in 15 December games.

A third-year pro, Datsyuk, who leads the in points and ranks third overall in the NHL, bested Atlanta center and Colorado center for the award.

Kiprusoff received the Defensive Player of the Month award after going 9-2-2 for the streaking . He posted a 1.21 goals-against average, a .952 save percentage and one shutout in December.

In 16 games since being acquired from San Jose on November 16, Kiprusoff is 11-3-2 with an NHL-leading 1.48 goals-against average. He beat out goalie for the honor.

forward captured the rookie honors with six goals and 12 points for the week. He equaled a season and career-best with three points (1g, 2a) versus Tampa Bay on December 9.

Hunter, who also posted three game-winning goals for the week, made his NHL debut

in

the

first

round

of

the

2002

Stanley

Cup

Playoffs.

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