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Thursday, 12.02.2010 / 10:21 PM / News

Associated Press

PITTSBURGH (AP) -Sidney Crosby scored all three Pittsburgh goals for the first natural hat trick of his six-season career and the Penguins won a matchup of teams on long winning streaks, beating the Atlanta Thrashers 3-2 on Thursday night.

With Crosby becoming the first Penguins player in nearly 10 years to score three goals in successive home games, Pittsburgh ran its winning streak to eight games. Atlanta's franchise record-tying streak ended at six.

The Penguins, 10-0-1 in their last 11, are on their longest winning streak since they also won eight in a row from Dec. 23, 2007-Jan. 10, 2008. They have won their last eight at home against Atlanta, which had outscored opponents 22-5 during its winning streak.

Marc-Andre Fleury allowed Nik Antropov's goal that made it 3-2 late in the second period, but made 20 saves while improving to 9-0-1 in his last 10 starts.

Crosby, the NHL's leading scorer with 21 goals and 23 assists for 44 points in 27 games, tied Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos for the goal-scoring lead. They tied for the goals title last season with 51 apiece.

Bryan Little also scored for Atlanta.

BOSTON (AP) - David Krejci had two goals and an assist and Marc Savard returned to the Boston lineup, helping the Bruins rout Tampa Bay.

Savard made his season debut after missing 23 games because of post-concussion syndrome, while Bruins goalie Tim Thomas made 37 saves to improve to 13-2-1.

Milan Lucic, Dennis Seidenberg, Shawn Thornton, Michael Ryder, Mark Recchi and Blake Wheeler added goals in Boston's highest-scoring game of the season. Victor Hedman scored for Tampa Bay.

UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) - Marian Gaborik had three goals and an assist in his first game with Sean Avery as a linemate, and Henrik Lundqvist made nine saves in relief of backup Martin Biron to lift the New York Rangers.

The Islanders, playing for the first time since snapping a 14-game losing streak (0-11-3) on Friday, couldn't make it two in a row in the opener of a home-and-home series with their biggest rival.

It was Gaborik's second hat trick of the season and 12th in the NHL. His third goal gave the Rangers a 6-5 lead with 5:25 left after Michael Grabner and Blake Comeau scored 1:41 apart to get the Islanders even.

Erik Christensen, the third member of the Rangers' top line, had a goal and assist, and Ryan Callahan and Brandon Prust also scored as the Rangers won for the fifth time in seven games. Avery had three assists after replacing Alex Frolov, who was dropped to the fourth line.

Zenon Konopka scored for the first time in nearly a year, and Matt Moulson and Rob Schremp added goals for the Islanders.

TORONTO (AP) - Nikolai Khabibulin made 33 saves and Taylor Hall scored twice to help Edmonton beat Toronto, giving the Oilers their third road victory four nights.

They earned victories in Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto with three goalies. Khabibulin was making his first start after missing seven games because of a groin injury.

Jordan Eberle, Sam Gagner and Ryan Jones also scored for Edmonton.

OTTAWA (AP) - Logan Couture scored twice, Dany Heatley had an assist in his return to Ottawa, and Antti Niemi made 28 saves for his first shutout of the season - and San Jose's first, too.

Patrick Marleau and Justin Braun had power-play goals for the Sharks. Heatley, who drew both Ottawa hooking penalties that led to San Jose's first two goals, was booed constantly as he played his first game in Ottawa since forcing the trade that sent him to the Sharks before last season.

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Brian Gionta and Lars Eller scored in the first 1:38, Tom Pyatt, Scott Gomez and Benoit Pouliot added goals and Carey Price made 27 saves for Montreal.

The Canadiens rebounded a night after blowing a two-goal, third-period lead in a 4-3 home loss to Edmonton.

Jason Arnott scored for the Devils.


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