Morning skate update: Anderson named NHL’s first star of the week

Earlier this season, you could say the Ottawa Senators were winning in spite of Craig Anderson. Now they’re winning because of him.

Morning skate update: Anderson named NHL’s first star of the week
Kyle Turris #7 of the Ottawa Senators scores during the shootout against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the game at Consol Energy Center on April 13, 2014 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Senators defeated the Penguins 3-2 in a shootout. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Earlier this season, you could say the Ottawa Senators were winning in spite of Craig Anderson. Now they’re winning because of him.

Anderson was named the NHL’s first star of the week on Monday on the strength of his three convincing wins over the past seven days.

Anderson, who was the third star a week ago, continues a winter resurgence that has helped the Senators rattle off eight wins in their last 10 games.

He is tied for second in the league in wins with 23 and has brought his goals against average down to 2.96 and his save percentage up to .907.

He’ll try to keep things rolling Monday night against the Winnipeg Jets, who are in town for a game at Scotiabank Place.

Anderson credited his teammates for playing a better all-around game in front of him.

“I’m just kind of riding the train and getting some of the benefits from it,” Anderson said.

Anderson struggled earlier this season, but his miscues were often covered up by the Senators’ surprisingly powerful offence.

Now, with everyone in sync, the team is working to establish itself among the Eastern Conference contenders. Ottawa currently sits fifth, tied with fourth-place Philadelphia in points but having played three more games.

There will be no lineup changes for the Senators Monday. They’ll head straight to the airport after the game for a flight to Toronto, where they play the Maple Leafs Tuesday.

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