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Ryan Suter's overtime goal lifts Predators to 4-3 win against Thrashers

NHL.com @NHL

ATLANTA - Ryan Suter beat Johan Hedberg on a breakaway 1:44 into overtime to give the Nashville Predators a 4-3 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Friday night.

Dan Hamhuis and Scott Nichol each had a goal and an assist to help Nashville win in Atlanta for the first time since Dec. 6, 1999. The Predators were 0-3-1 in Atlanta since that victory in the Thrashers' first season.

Atlanta's Ilya Kovalchuk tied it with 9:34 remaining in regulation on his eighth goal of the season, taking a pass from Nathan Oystrick and beating goalie Pekka Rinne from just to the left of the crease.

Jason Arnott scored his team-leading 11th goal 6:21 into the third period to give Nashville the lead. The puck came to the centre after a scramble in front of the net and he beat Hedberg.

Atlanta tied it at two on a goal by Oystrick at 10:06 of the second period. Eric Perrin dug the puck out in the corner, and Jason Williams hit Oystrick with a perfect pass as the defenceman jumped into the play after coming off the bench. Oystrick, who didn't have a point in his first 11 NHL games, has two goals and two assists in his past three games.

Nashville took a 2-1 lead 42 seconds into the second period, although the goal wasn't awarded until after a video review on the next stoppage of play. Nichol's blast from the right circle appeared to go high, but the replay showed that the puck had actually beaten Hedberg and cut through the net.

It took more than eight minutes for Nashville to get its first shot, but the Predators scored once they did. Nichol stole on the puck on a penalty kill and fed Vernon Fiddler, who made a drop pass to Hamhuis on the rush. Hamhuis beat Hedberg after a fake to give Nashville the lead at 8:39.

Atlanta tied it at 16:39 of the first period - and Hamhuis again had a part in the goal. The Nashville defenceman tried to clear he puck from behind his net, but the puck went off White's stick and past Rinne into the net for an unassisted goal. It was White's seventh goal and 20th point of the season.

Notes: Nashville goalie Dan Ellis got the night off after starting eight consecutive games. He was 4-3-1 with a 2.22 goals-against average during the stretch. ... Veteran Wade Belak, acquired from Florida on Thursday, played his first game for Nashville at right wing. ... RW Joey Crabb, recently called up by the Thrashers from Chicago (AHL), made his NHL debut. ... Atlanta goalie Kari Lehtonen, who hasn't played since Oct. 30, had an injection Thursday as part of the treatment for his ailing back and could be skating in a few days.

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