Vanek is AHL’s Player of the Week

The American Hockey League announced today that Rochester Americans left wing Thomas Vanek has been named the CCM Vector/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending November 28, 2004. Vanek recorded four goals and three assists for seven points in four games last week for the Amerks.

After a slow start to the 2004-05 season, Vanek capped an impressive month of November with the most productive stretch of his young pro career. He scored Rochester’s only goal in a 3-1 loss to Hamilton on Wednesday night, then put together consecutive three-point nights in a home-and-home series with Binghamton. Vanek had a goal and two assists in Friday’s 4-3 overtime loss, and scored twice before assisting on the overtime winner in Saturday’s 4-3 victory. His three-game scoring streak came to an end on Sunday, but Vanek tied a game high with five shots on goal in a 4-3 win over St. John’s.

In recognition of his achievement, Vanek will be presented with an etched crystal award prior to an upcoming Amerks home game.

The fifth overall selection (by Buffalo) in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, the 20-year-old Vanek joined the Amerks this season after two standout seasons at the University of Minnesota, which included honors as the MVP of the NCAA Tournament as a freshman in 2003, when the Golden Gophers claimed their second straight national championship. A native of Vienna, Austria, Vanek has recorded eight goals and five assists for 13 points in 19 games for Rochester this year, and is tied for second in the AHL with six power-play goals.

Other nominees for CCM Vector/AHL Player of the Week include Binghamton left wing Denis Hamel, Bridgeport right wing Rob Collins, Chicago right wing J.P. Vigier, Cincinnati goaltender Mike Ayers, Cleveland left wing Tomas Plihal, Edmonton left wing Raffi Torres, Grand Rapids center Eric Manlow, Hartford left wing Chad Wiseman, Houston center Rickard Wallin, Lowell right wing Chuck Kobasew, Manchester center Mike Cammalleri, Manitoba center Ryan Kesler, Milwaukee left wing Simon Gamache, Philadelphia right wing Mark Murphy, Portland center Brooks Laich, San Antonio right wing Chris Nielsen, Springfield center Ryan Craig, St. John’s center Kyle Wellwood, Syracuse goaltender Karl Goehring and Utah goaltender David LeNeveu.