NHL Game Summary - Atlanta at Toronto
(Tuesday, November 25th)
Final Score: Atlanta 6, Toronto 3
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Todd White scored two goals while Johan Hedberg made 32 saves, as the Atlanta Thrashers defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs, 6-3, at Air Canada Centre.
Chris Thorburn, Colby Armstrong, Ilya Kovalchuk and Mathieu Schneider also scored for the Thrashers, who snapped a three-game skid. Slava Kozlov posted two assists in the win.
Jeff Finger, Nik Antropov and Niklas Hagman scored for the Maple Leafs, who are winless in their last four games (0-3-1) and fell to 3-6-2 in the month of November. Curtis Joseph allowed six goals on 30 shots in the losing effort.
"They came out hard, they didn't slow up, and we didn't have any intensity out there," said Toronto's Dominic Moore. "We have to come out with a better effort, and more intensity has to be shown in the (locker) room."
Rumors continue to swirl in Toronto that Brian Burke could be named the general manager of the Maple Leafs as early as Saturday.
The visitors opened the scoring at the 6:50 mark of the first period on Armstrong's third goal of the season. He accepted a pass from Marty Reasoner in the neutral zone, crossed the blue line along the right-wing side, out-hustled Finger and, from inside the circle, beat Joseph over the near shoulder with a laser wrist shot.
With under four minutes to go in the first, the Thrashers wasted a golden opportunity to increase their lead. Kovalchuk escaped with the puck and streaked in on a clear breakaway, but shot the puck directly into the chest of Joseph.
White's fifth goal, 4:17 into the middle session, gave Atlanta a two-goal edge. The puck was kept deep in the Thrashers' offensive zone and Kozlov fought for position with Matt Stajan along the rear boards. From behind the net, Kozlov feathered a quick pass that perfectly found the stick of unguarded White, whose snap shot one-timer from near the left post lit the lamp.
Less than three minutes later, Atlanta moved ahead by three goals. John Mitchell was fishing for the puck in front of his own net and caused Joseph to lose his balance before the puck slipped free and caromed directly to Thorburn, who easily tapped the disc into an open net from in close at 7:04.
"It was two good, hard-working teams going up and down the ice," said Armstrong, "It was a bit chippy. We do a good job catching teams with our speed. We have a lot speed and we have a great goaltender who played a great game tonight."
Antropov's eighth goal of 2008-09, 27 seconds later, brought the Leafs within 3-1, but the Thrashers regained their three-goal lead with 6:55 to go in the second stanza when Kovalchuk beat Joseph from the right side.
At the 5:56 mark of the final period, Finger tallied to make it 4-2.
The Thrashers grabbed a 5-2 lead at the 7:30 mark of the third on Schneider's second marker of the season. He held control in the neutral zone and crossed over the blue line down the left-wing side. Without an open passing lane, Schneider wound up and fired a rocket slap shot from inside the near circle that flew into the back of the cage.
White's second goal of the game was a fluke goal on the power play at 15:09. He held control of the puck behind the net along the rear boards and purposely sent the puck toward the net with the intention of banking it off the skate of Joseph and it worked.
The scoring was capped by Hagman's power-play tally with 2:43 to play in the game.
Both teams finished 1-for-5 on the power play...Hagman now has seven goals this season...Hedberg made 12 saves in both the first and second periods.
11/25 23:15:42 ET