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Leetch makes impact in win over Islanders

Posted: Friday, March 05, 2004

TORONTO Newcomer Brian Leetch had three assists in the Toronto Maple Leafs' 6-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

Acquired on Wednesday from the New York Rangers, Leetch donned a different uniform for the first time in his 17-season NHL career.

Bruins 3, Rangers 1

BOSTON Sergei Gonchar scored in his Boston debut, and Joe Thornton had two goals to help the Bruins end a four-game winless streak with a victory over New York.

Jiri Slegr added a pair of assists, and newly acquired center Michael Nylander had an assist for the Bruins.

Gonchar, the All-Star defenseman obtained Wednesday from Washington, gave Boston a 3-0 lead with a power-play goal 9:51 into the third period.

Predators 9, Penguins 4

PITTSBURGH Dan Hamhuis scored a goal during a five-point night and Nashville built a five-goal lead early in the second period in extending Pittsburgh's home winless streak to 16 games.

The Penguins are 0-15-1 at home since Dec. 29 and can tie the NHL record for longest home winless streak against Anaheim on Saturday night. The Ottawa Senators went 0-15-2 during a 17-game skid in 1995-96.

Oilers 1, Blues 1

ST. LOUIS Chris Osgood made 31 saves, including a penalty shot by Ryan Smyth, to help St. Louis tie Edmonton. The Blues earned only their second point in five games under new coach Mike Kitchen. They're 0-3-2 in that span, totaling five goals, and 0-5-2 in their last seven overall.

Wild 1, Kings 1

LOS ANGELES Jason Wiemer scored with 2:17 left in the third period and the Minnesota Wild barely avoided their third shutout in five games, tying the Los Angeles Kings 1-1 on Thursday night.

Luc Robitaille scored late in the first period for Los Angeles, and Cristobal Huet stopped 31 shots, including a breakaway by Marian Gaborik late in the second period. Six of Huet's saves came in overtime.

The Kings remained eighth in the Western Conference playoff chase, one point behind seventh-place Calgary.

and four ahead of St. Louis.

The Wild have fewer goals than any team except Pittsburgh and Carolina. Wiemer scored his eighth of the season on a one-timer from 10 feet, after Pierre-Marc Bouchard passed him the puck from behind the net.

The tie was the 18th for the Wild, most in the NHL. They are 0-4-2 in their last six games.

Robitaille scored his 18th goal of the season and the 649th of his career just 62 seconds before the first intermission. He carried the puck out from behind the net and took a wrist shot from the right circle that dribbled between Dwayne Roloson's skates.

The highlight of the night came with less than 2 1/2 minutes left in the second period, while Minnesota was killing off a tripping penalty against Willie Mitchell.

Kings defenseman Denis Grebeshkov, playing in his third NHL game, fumbled the puck away inside the Minnesota blue line and fell down as Gaborik took off the other way. He came straight down the slot and shot the puck low into Huet's pads, then was denied again on the rebound.

Notes: Roloson played for the first time since his father's death on Feb. 22. ... Minnesota is 0-6-6 on the second night of back-to-back games. ... Sean Avery of the Kings and Minnesota's Stephane Veilleux dropped the gloves just 10 seconds after the opening faceoff. ... D Nathan Dempsey made his Kings debut following Tuesday's trade from Chicago. He is the 40th player to suit up for them this season, tying the Blackhawks for the most in the league. A club-record 47 players appeared in at least one game for the Kings in 1995-96, including current Minnesota LW Matt Johnson. ... Johnson returned from a five-game suspension for slashing Vancouver's Matt Cooke. ... Kings C Martin Straka played for the first time since Jan. 10. He underwent arthroscopic surgery on both knees Jan. 22 and missed 23 games. ... Kings D Tomas Zizka was assigned to Manchester of the AHL. Two of his teammates were claimed off waivers Brad Norton by Washington and LW Jon Sim by Pittsburgh.



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