NHL capsules: Big third propels Rangers past Lightning
|New York Rangers celebrate after they scored during the third period against the Tampa Bay Lightning at St. Pete Times Forum on Dec. 3, 2011. (Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE)
TAMPA - Final Score: NY Rangers 4, Tampa Bay 2
Brad Richards, Derek Stepan and Artem Anisimov each scored a third-period goal and collected an assist, leading the New York Rangers to a fifth straight victory, 4-2, in a matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning at St. Pete Times Forum. Henrik Lundqvist made 24 saves for the Rangers, who have won 12 of their last 14 games. Steve Downie and Tom Pyatt provided the offense for Tampa Bay, which has dropped three straight and five of seven overall. Mathieu Garon made 31 saves in defeat.
Final Score: Pittsburgh 3, Carolina 2
Raleigh, NC - Craig Adams recorded a goal and an assist as the Pittsburgh Penguins edged the Carolina Hurricanes, 3-2. Arron Asham and Pascal Dupuis also tallied for the Penguins, who have won four of their past five games. Brent Johnson stopped 30-of-32 shots in the win. Jamie McBain netted both goals for Carolina, which has lost three consecutive games since Kirk Muller took over as head coach on Monday. The Hurricanes have lost six in a row overall. Brian Boucher made 37 saves in the loss.
Final Score: Buffalo 3, Nashville 2
Nashville, TN - Ryan Miller was victorious in his first game back from a concussion despite taking another hard hit. Miller made 32 saves Saturday night and the Buffalo Sabres held on for a 3-2 win over the Nashville Predators, only their second win in the last seven games. Predators forward Jordin Tootoo was whistled for a charging major and game misconduct after running into Miller as he skated toward the net in the second period. Miller, who missed the last nine games, jumped on Tootoo and threw punches with his glove. But he remained in the game and stopped all 17 shot he faced in the first two periods, giving up two goals on 17 shots in the third. Luke Adam, Zack Kassian and Tyler Ennis scored for the Sabres and Ville Leino had two assists. Craig Smith and David Legwand scored for the Predators, who have lost six of their last eight. Anders Lindback allowed three goals on just 14 Buffalo shots.
Final Score: Chicago 5, St. Louis 2
St. Louis, MO - Marian Hossa scored two special teams goals, one shorthanded and one on the power play, as the Chicago Blackhawks bested the St. Louis Blues, 5-2, at Scottrade Center. Jonathan Toews and Patrick Sharp both posted a goal and an assist for Chicago, which has won four of its last five games. The Blackhawks' Ray Emery stopped 23 shots. Sharp's goal was also on the power play, as Chicago went 2-for-3 with an extra attacker while holding St. Louis 0-for-4. David Perron scored in the first period in his return to St. Louis' lineup after missing 97 games because of a concussion. Perron was injured against San Jose on November 4, 2010. Chris Stewart also tallied for the Blues, who have dropped two straight on the heels of a four-game win streak. Brian Elliott was beaten four times on 35 shots. It marked the first time he had given up more than two goals in 12 starts this season.
Final Score: Philadelphia 4, Phoenix 2
Glendale, AZ - Ilya Bryzgalov made 36 saves in his return to Phoenix and the Flyers used a four-goal first period to beat the Coyotes, 4-2. Bryzgalov, who already conquered his former team, 2-1, in Philadelphia on November 17, won his second straight start in his first appearance in the desert since losing Game 4 of a Western Conference quarterfinal series against Detroit last April. Matt Read picked up a goal and two assists in the early burst for the Flyers, who have won four of their last five. Wayne Simmonds, Claude Giroux and Scott Hartnell also lit the lamp in the opening 20 minutes. Ray Whitney and Mikkel Boedker scored for the Coyotes, who have dropped two in a row. Mike Smith was pulled after giving up four goals on 17 shots in the first period. Jason LaBarbera finished the game by stopping all 13 shots he faced.
Final Score: NY Islanders 5, Dallas 4
Dallas, TX - Matt Moulson scored a career-best four goals, lifting the New York Islanders to a 5-4 win over the Dallas Stars. Dylan Reese tallied the other goal for the Islanders, who got three assists from P.A. Parenteau in their third win in four outings. Rick DiPietro started in net for New York, but left the game after the second period with a groin injury. He allowed four goals on 21 shots before exiting. Al Montoya came on to stop all 13 shots he saw in the third period. Jake Dowell, Tom Wandell, Eric Nystrom and Tomas Vincour tallied for Dallas, which got 22 saves from Andrew Raycroft in defeat.
Final Score: Florida 5, San Jose 3
San Jose, CA - Tomas Fleischmann had a goal and two assists, as Florida downed San Jose, 5-3, on Saturday. Stephen Weiss, Marco Sturm, Jack Skille and Dmitry Kulikov also scored for the Panthers, who split a four-game road trip. Scott Clemmensen made 23 saves in the win. Logan Couture had a pair of goals for the Sharks, who have dropped three of four. Jamie McGinn also scored, while Thomas Greiss made 30 saves in defeat.