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NHL briefs

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published January 18, 2001

Coyotes best Pens in wild one

PHOENIX -- Mario Lemieux ended his one-game scoring drought. He couldn't do anything about Pittsburgh's penalty killing, though.

Daniel Briere and Keith Tkachuk scored power-play goals 48 seconds apart late in the third period as the Coyotes rallied for a 5-4 victory Wednesday night.

Tkachuk sent the winner -- his second power-play goal of the game and the Coyotes' fourth -- past goalie Jean-Sebastien Aubin with 4:16 left. It was after Briere had tied the score to end a five-on-three Phoenix advantage.

The Coyotes got that advantage after Claude Lemieux scuffled with Pittsburgh's Kevin Stevens and Ian Moran. All three went to the penalty box with 5:34 left. Eleven seconds later, Pittsburgh's Marc Bergevin was whistled for cross-checking.

Mario Lemieux had two assists after going scoreless in a 3-2 win over Anaheim on Monday. Alexei Kovalev had two goals for the Penguins.

STARS 4, PREDATORS 3 (OT): Dallas coach Ken Hitchcock put Jere Lehtinen, Brett Hull and Mike Modano back together on the top line. Lehtinen scored a career-high three goals, and Hull scored the winner 1:41 into overtime for the host Stars.

"Modano and Lehtinen had a bead on the game from the start, and Brett's an opportunistic guy," Hitchcock said. "They were outstanding."

BLACKHAWKS 5, PANTHERS 0: Jocelyn Thibault stopped 16 shots for his fourth shutout of the season for host Chicago, unbeaten in five (4-0-1), and Bob Probert scored twice for the first time in five seasons.

MIGHTY DUCKS 5, THRASHERS 2: Defenseman Jason Marshall, whose last goal came 22 months ago, scored twice for visiting Anaheim, and goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere got his first NHL win in more than a year. Atlanta is winless in its past nine (0-7-2).

WILD 3, BLUE JACKETS 2 (OT): Sean O'Donnell scored 1:07 into overtime and host Minnesota ended a four-game losing streak. Wild defenseman Filip Kuba flipped a wrist shot over goalie Ron Tugnutt's right shoulder with 1:02 left in regulation to force overtime. Minnesota and Columbus have equaled Atlanta's 14 expansion victories of last season.

KINGS 2, MAPLE LEAFS 1: Jamie Storr made 34 saves for visiting Los Angeles. Toronto has four wins in 16 games.

BLACKHAWKS: Defenseman Jaroslav Spacek's left shoulder injury, originally believed to be minor, probably will keep him out of the lineup 4-6 weeks. An MRI exam showed a crack in the bone, he said.

RANGERS: Captain Mark Messier turns 40 today. "It's no different than last year or the year before," he said. "I really don't hold any significance to it."

Messier joins Colorado's Ray Bourque and Detroit's Igor Larionov in turning 40 this season.

SABRES: Michael Peca's agent said it's time the Sabres realize the restricted free-agent center is done negotiating with them and wants to be traded.

Don Meehan's statements came a day after the Sabres faxed Meehan a new four-year, $11.5-million offer that tops out at $3.25-million in the final season.

"All I can say is that we made the offer the other day," Sabres spokesman Michael Gilbert said.

SHARKS: Leading scorer Vincent Damphousse was scheduled to have surgery today to repair a dislocated shoulder, and he was expected to be out up to four months. The forward was injured in a 3-2 loss to Detroit on Monday.

ATTENDANCE REPORT: Bolstered by big numbers in Columbus and St. Paul, Minn., the league said teams were averaging about a 0.7 percent increase in attendance at the season's halfway mark, compared with 1.5 percent a year ago. The NHL counts tickets distributed, not people in the arena, executive vice president Bill Daly said.

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