Angelo Esposito gave his new NHL team plenty to be happy about.
Esposito scored on a first-period penalty-shot and added two assists as the Quebec Remparts trounced the woeful Drummondville Voltigeurs 9-2 in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action Wednesday night.
The 20-year-old centre played his first game for the Remparts since having his rights dealt to the Atlanta Thrashers by the Pittsburgh Penguins in a five-player deal at Tuesday's NHL trade deadline. Esposito was considered the centrepiece of the Thrashers' package after Atlanta sent superstar Marian Hossa and veteran Pascal Dupuis to the Penguins.
Esposito helped set up David Gilbert's fourth goal of the season at 16:42 of the first period, and he extended the lead just under three minutes later, beating Drummondville starting netminder Michael Dupont on a penalty shot. Esposito's second assist came on one of the Remparts' five third-period goals.
Mikhail Stefanovich led the way with three goals as Quebec (34-25-1-3) ended a four-game losing streak. Stefanovich, considered one of the best forward prospects ahead of this summer's NHL draft, has scored six times in his last six games after going without a goal in his previous five.
In other QMJHL action Wednesday, it was: P.E.I. 2 Moncton 1 (OT), Val-d'Or 8 Rouyn-Noranda 2, Lewiston 3 Halifax 2, Chicoutimi 4 Rimouski 2 and Baie-Comeau 8 Shawinigan 3.
At Quebec, David Gilbert added two goals and an assist while Kelsey Tessier, Marc-Olivier Vallerand and Christophe Poirier also scored in the one-sided victory.
Jeff Marcoux and Garrett Peters countered for Drummondville (10-48-2-3), loser of two straight. The Voltigeurs need to score 31 times over their final nine games to avoid setting a franchise record for fewest goals in a season, established in 2002-03 when they finished 15-53-4.
Kevin Desfosses made 22 saves to earn his 31st victory of the season for Quebec.
Dupont and Nathan Dunnett combined to stop 27 shots in defeat.
Rocket 2 Wildcats 1 (OT)
At Charlottetown, Geoff Walker's 34th goal of the season 55 seconds into overtime propelled the Rocket past Moncton.
Martin Latal added a first-period power-play goal for P.E.I. (27-32-2-1).
Mark Barberio's second-period goal provided the lone offence for the Wildcats (21-30-3-9).
Foreurs 8 Huskies 2
At Val-d'Or, Que., Jonathan Hazen scored twice and added three assists and Val-d'Or scored five times in the first period to rout Rouyn-Noranda.
Maxime Sauve and Samuel Richard each added a pair of goals while Sebastien Savoie and Marc-Andre Cote had singles as Val-d'Or (26-30-3-4) ended a five-game losing skid.
Jean-Sebastien Berube and Hugo Carpentier answered for the Huskies (42-19-2-1), who saw their three-game winning streak come to an end.
Maineiacs 3 Mooseheads 2
At Lewiston, Maine, Stefano Giliati's short-handed goal early in the third period was the game winner as the Maineiacs clinched a playoff berth with a win over Halifax.
Stefan Chaput and Kevin Marshall added goals for Lewiston (33-23-4-3).
Jakub Voracek and Andrew White scored for the Mooseheads (38-20-0-5).
Sagueneens 4 Oceanic 2
At Chicoutimi, Que., Jacob Lagace scored the game-winner with 5:06 left in regulation as the Sagueneens beat Rimouski.
Lagace finished with a pair of goals, and Francis Pare also scored twice to increase his league-leading goal total to 48 for Chicoutimi (33-24-2-4).
Alexandre Neron and Felix Lefrancois replied for the Oceanic (28-34-1-0).
Drakkar 8 Cataractes 3
At Baie-Comeau, Que., Benjamin Breault had two goals and two assists as the Drakkar cruised past Shawinigan.
Matt Marquardt scored twice to reach the 40-goal plateau, and Guillaume Goulet added two goals and an assist as Baie-Comeau (41-16-2-4) won its third straight. Francois Bouchard and Samuel Morneau added singles.
Philippe Paradis, Patrick Bernier and Pierre-Alexandre Vandall had goals for the Cataractes (30-28-0-3).