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Unpaid Senators now best in league

Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times
published January 7, 2003

NEW YORK -- Success is coming easily to Marian Hossa now that he is not concerned when his paycheck will arrive.

Hossa scored twice, giving him six goals in three games, and Magnus Arvedson snapped a third-period tie as the Senators beat the Rangers 5-2 Monday night, jumping over Dallas atop the league standings with 56 points.

The only place things are not going well for the Senators is in the bank, where the team was unable to meet payroll last week after a financing plan fell through.

But Hossa, with 27 goals, brought the NHL's top team into a 1-1 tie in the first and stretched Ottawa's lead to 4-2 at 5:25 of the third. Hossa is one goal behind Vancouver's Markus Naslund for the league lead.

"Everybody seems to be focused on the game. Nobody is focused on the money issue which is really good," Hossa said. "We're going to get our money back and everything is going to be fine."

A finance plan is expected to be in place this week that will help the club meet its obligations.

Mark Messier and Bobby Holik had goals for the Rangers, who trail Ottawa by 19 points despite a payroll that exceeds the Senators' by about $40-million.

KINGS 3, WILD 2: Rookie Joe Corvo scored his first career goal, and injury-ravaged Los Angeles snapped a four-game losing streak. Felix Potvin made 26 saves and Steve Kelly and Brad Chartrand scored for the visiting Kings, who were missing six of their top forwards and have seven skaters on injured reserve. The Kings dressed six rookies.

PREDATORS 5, BLUE JACKETS 1: David Legwand and Andreas Johansson each had two goals and an assist as visiting Nashville inched closer to moving out of the cellar in the Western Conference. Goalie Tomas Vokoun, starting a franchise-record 16th straight game, made 21 saves. Scott Hartnell had Nashville's other goal. The Predators, 9-8-3-0 in their past 20, are one point behind Columbus.

BRUINS-RANGERS TRADE: Boston acquired left wing Krzysztof Oliwa from New York for a ninth-round draft pick next year. Oliwa played nine scoreless games with the Rangers before being assigned to AHL's Hartford, where he had one assist in 15 games.

DEVILS: Forward Brian Gionta, who was hit with a puck by teammate Scott Stevens on Friday, will be sidelined 2-3 weeks with a broken right leg.

SHARKS: Defenseman Brad Stuart was placed on the injured list with a sore right ankle and will miss at least 2-3 weeks.

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