Two men who played in the Salt Palace Saturday night share the International Hockey League's Player of the Week honor for the week of Dec. 11-17. Golden Eagle second-year right winger Marc Bureau, who broke two franchise records Tuesday and has a five-game scoring streak, and Denver rookie goalie Mike Richter, so impressive in a 3-1 loss to the Eagles, tied for the honor.
In three games last week, Bureau scored seven goals and four assists, including his five-goal, eight-point game last Tuesday that broke two franchise records. Bureau now has 25 points for the season; he totaled 27 points in 69 games last season. He has 15 points in his last five games.Bureau had the game-winning goal Saturday night in Richter's only loss out of four games for the week (the other three were wins over Peoria), and Bureau had a game-winning assist and two power-play goals Tuesday. For the week, he was +8, raising his plus/minus rating for the season to +15, third-best on the club behind Ken Sabourin (+19) and Theoren Fleury (+17).
Richter, the former U.S. Olympian, had a 3-1 record for the week, allowing 2.25 goals a game. He stopped 135 of 144 shots against him for a 93 percent save percentage.
Meanwhile, the Eagles' Fleury took over first place in the IHL scoring derby on Saturday. He has 60 points to 58 by Denver's Simon Wheeldon. "He will not relinquish it," predicted Eagle Coach Paul Baxter. Fleury has a 10-game scoring streak that includes nine goals and 19 assists, thanks to six- and five-point games last week.
The Eagles now have four men - Fleury, Peter Lappin (42 points), Rich Chernomaz (36) and Paul Ranheim (35) - among the top 15 in the IHL. That's two more than any other IHL team this week. And Doug Dadswell's 11 wins in goal tie him for tops in the league with Muskegon's Bruce Racine and Milwaukee's Frank Caprice.
The Eagles are off until Muskegon comes to the Salt Palace for the first of a three-game series starting Monday.