Thrashers downed

Associated Press
Atlanta's Ilya Kovalchuk (right) battles with Boston's Andrew Ference for control of the puck.

ATLANTA --- Milan Lucic scored the go-ahead goal off a rebound with 3:47 remaining and Alex Auld won his third consecutive start for Boston, leading the Bruins to a 5-3 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Wednesday night.


Mark Recchi scored twice in his first game with the Thrashers, and Ilya Kovalchuk added his NHL-leading 24th goal as the Thrashers overcame an early 2-0 deficit.

But Lucic scored his second career goal with pure hustle in a 3-3 game. After getting taken down at center ice by Bobby Holik, leading to a delayed penalty against the Thrashers, Lucic got up and headed for the Atlanta net.


In Columbus, Ohio, Fredrik Norrena stopped 15 shots, and Columbus relied on its defense to beat Colorado.

It was the second time in a week the Blue Jackets defeated the Avalanche, a first for the franchise that was 2-21-2 against Colorado before the back-to-back wins.

Kris Beech, Jared Boll, Manny Malhotra and Sergei Fedorov scored, but the Blue Jackets went more than 14 minutes without a shot and mustered only one in the second period.

The teams finished with 16 each.


In Raleigh, N.C., Dany Heatley had two goals and an assist, leading Ottawa to a rout of Carolina.

Ray Emery and Martin Gerber teamed to post Ottawa's second shutout of the season. Jason Spezza had a goal and two assists, Dean McCammond added a goal and an assist, and Mike Fisher, and Shean Donovan also scored.

The Eastern Conference-leading Senators had a 2-0 edge before the game was 51/2 minutes old, and had three first-period goals.


In Buffalo, N.Y., Ales Kotalik had a goal and assist, Ryan Miller made 28 saves, and Buffalo scored three goals in the second period to beat New York.

Nolan Pratt, Toni Lydman, Derek Roy and Jochen Hecht also scored for the Sabres, who have won two of three.

Buffalo beat the Islanders for the first time in three meetings this season.

Miroslav Satan, Richard Park and Mike Sillinger scored for New York, which has lost six of seven, dating to Nov. 29.

Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro, making his fifth consecutive start, finished with 36 saves. His three-game winning streak against the Sabres was snapped.


In Washington, Mike Green and Joe Motzko stole the show from Alex Ovechkin and Jaromir Jagr.

Green scored 3:41 into overtime after posting two assists in regulation, Motzko had his first two goals of the season, and Washington beat New York.



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