Messier's brilliant passing pushes Rangers past Penguins

Posted: Sunday, January 04, 2004

PITTSBURGH Mark Messier set up the Rangers' first two goals, and Jussi Markkanen withstood a penalty shot and a sizable Pittsburgh shots advantage to beat the Penguins 4-1 Saturday.

Two excellent passes by Messier set up goals by former Penguins forwards Dan LaCouture in the first period and Petr Nedved in the second to help the Rangers close a 3-1 road trip.

Canadiens 5, Thrashers 1

MONTREAL Richard Zednik and Joe Juneau each had a goal and an assist to lead Montreal over Atlanta.

Jose Theodore stopped 27 shots and came within 4:50 of a shutout before allowing Chris Tamer's goal at 15:10 of the third with Montreal up 4-0.

Senators 5, Capitals 2

OTTAWA Daniel Alfredsson and Bryan Smolinski scored two goals each and Ottawa extended its season-high unbeaten streak to nine games.

Alfredsson snapped a tie with a power-play goal 4:53 into the third period. He put Ottawa up by two with his second goal of the game.

Maple Leafs 3, Sabres 3

TORONTO Matt Stajan scored the tying goal with 3:02 left in regulation and Toronto rallied to tie Buffalo.

Down 3-1 in the third period, Toronto's Mats Sundin scored a power-play goal before Stajan tipped Ken Klee's slap shot past Martin Biron.

Toronto outshot Buffalo 37-16.

Bruins 3, Islanders 3

BOSTON Trent Hunter and Adrian Aucoin scored four minutes apart midway through the third period, helping the New York Islanders tie Boston.

New York is 6-1-1 in its last seven games, while Boston dropped to 1-5-5 in its last 11 home games.

The Bruins' Patrice Bergeron scored a power-play goal late in the second period, and Sandy McCarthy made it 3-1 early in the third, before Hunter and Aucoin struck.

Red Wings 3, Mighty Ducks 1

DETROIT Brendan Shanahan scored early in the third period to break a tie and lift Detroit over Anaheim.

Tomas Holmstrom and Kirk Maltby scored the other Detroit goals, and Manny Legace made 31 saves. The Red Wings (25-12-4-1) lead the NHL with 55 points.

Lightning 6, Flyers 1

TAMPA, Fla. Fredrik Modin scored three goals and Tampa Bay routed Philadelphia.

Modin had not scored in his previous 13 games but rebounded for his second career hat trick.

Tampa Bay had scored nine goals in its previous seven games. Vincent Lecavalier, Ben Clymer and Ruslan Fedotenko also scored for the Lightning, who won for the fifth time in 21 games (5-12-4). Tampa Bay is 2-6-2 in its last 10 home games.

Panthers 1, Blue Jackets 0

SUNRISE, Fla. Roberto Luongo stopped 42 shots for his third shutout of the season and Stephen Weiss scored the only goal in Florida's victory over Columbus.

Luongo stopped 18 shots in the third period to preserve the victory. Weiss scored three minutes into the second period.

Sharks 3, Blues 1

ST. LOUIS Backup goalie Vesa Toskala made 25 saves to lead San Jose over St. Louis.

Toskala, who improved to 7-4-4, has allowed two goals or fewer in 12 of his 16 games.

Nicholas Dimitrakos, Marco Sturm and Todd Harvey scored for San Jose, which has won six of eight. The Sharks have recorded at least one point in 26 of their last 31 games.

Predators 3, Devils 2

NASHVILLE, Tenn. David Legwand scored two goals, one on the power play, and Tomas Vokoun made 38 saves to lift Nashville past New Jersey.

The Predators took a 2-0 lead in the second period on a goal by Mark Eaton at 4:48.

Canucks 3, Flames 1

CALGARY, Alberta Markus Naslund scored his 20th goal and Alex Auld made 31 saves in helping Vancouver beat Calgary.

Naslund's goal at 6:04 of the second period was the first of three unanswered scores for Vancouver in the period.

Stars 2, Kings 2

LOS ANGELES Martin Straka scored a short-handed goal with 22 seconds left in regulation to rally Los Angeles to a tie with Dallas.

Stu Barnes ended an 18-game drought and Bill Guerin also scored for the Stars, who remained a point behind the second-place Kings in the Pacific Division. The tie snapped a string of six straight losses to division rivals, which began with back-to-back defeats to the Kings.

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