for this game

Kovalchuk helps Thrashers end skid

Dec 7, 2008 - 4:54 AM
By Doug Mittler PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

UNIONDALE, New York (Ticker) -- Ilya Kovalchuk and the Atlanta Thrashers took out their frustrations on another last-place team.

Kovalchuk scored for the first time in four games and added two assists as the Thrashers snapped a five-game losing streak Saturday with a 5-1 victory over the New York Islanders.

Bryan Little, Eric Perrin and Chris Thorburn also scored and enforcer Eric Boulton netted his second goal in as many games for Atlanta, which had lost three in a row on the road. The Thrashers, who occupy the basement in the Southeast Division, improved to just 2-7-1 in their last 10 games.

"We can't get much more desperate for wins than this," Atlanta coach John Anderson said. "Our hope lies in our desperation."

Johan Hedberg made 28 saves for Atlanta and also received help from his goalposts, as two shots by New York struck iron. The Swede also stopped a breakaway attempt by Blake Comeau with 3 1/2 minutes left in the third period.

"We hit the two posts. That pretty much sums up the way the night went for us," said Comeau, who was recalled from the minors earlier in the day.

The Islanders, last in the Atlantic Division, lost for the fourth time in five games despite receiving a goal from captain Bill Guerin 51 seconds into the contest. New York fell to 1-5-0 against Southeast opponents this season.

Atlanta took the lead for good at 10:04 of the second period following a turnover by New York defenseman Andy Sutton. Kovalchuk took a pass from Marty Reasoner low in the right faceoff circle and flicked the puck over the shoulder of goaltender Joey MacDonald for his ninth goal of the season.

"He can pretty much do whatever he wants with the puck," MacDonald said.

Kovalchuk, who netted 52 goals in two of the previous three seasons, scored for only the third time in his last 11 games.

"It doesn't matter who scored," Kovalchuk said. "We played a full 60 minutes."

Boulton gave the Thrashers a two-goal lead just over five minutes later, tallying for the second time in as many contest. After Joey Crabb's shot from the left circle deflected off Islanders defenseman Brendan Witt, Boulton fired it into a vacant net from the slot with 4:37 remaining in the second.

The Thrashers scored both of the goals in the session despite being outshot, 13-6. The Islanders had a 29-17 edge overall.

"We didn't have a lot of shots, but many of the ones we did have were quality chances, and we capitalized," Perrin said. "Tonight, we were doing the right things. One of the big reasons we played well and won was that we were moving our feet."

Kovalchuk set up a power-play goal by Perrin at 7:19 of the third to make it 4-1 and fed Thorburn for the final tally during a 2-on-1 rush with 8:57 left. Thorburn's goal came shortly after a shot by Comeau at the other end of the rink hit the post.

Boulton was whistled for hooking 19 seconds into the game and the Islanders capitalized, as Guerin put a wrist shot from the left circle past Hedberg less than a minute into the game.

Little forged a 1-1 tie with 2:16 left in the first with his 11th goal, burying a centering pass from below the right circle by defenseman Garnet Exelby.

MacDonald stopped just 12 of 17 shots for New York, which is one loss shy of the 1,200th in franchise history.

"It was one of those games where the harder you worked, the worse it got," MacDonald said.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 2 2 5
    NY ISLANDERS 1 0 0 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - (PP) BILL GUERIN 10 (MARK STREIT, DOUG WEIGHT) 0:51
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 11 (GARNET EXELBY, VYACHESLAV KOZLOV)
    17:44
    2ND PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 9 (MARTY REASONER, NATHAN OYSTRICK)
    10:04
    ATL - ERIC BOULTON 2 (

    Dec 6 9:36 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 5
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    3RD PRD: ATL - CHRIS THORBURN 3 (ILYA KOVALCHUK) 11:03

    Thrashers 5, Islanders 1  3rd - 8:57Dec 6 9:18 PM
  • 15
    roots
    #1 Cards Fan Added 10 roots

    Thrashers 4, Islanders 1  3rd - 12:41Dec 6 9:16 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 4
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    3RD PRD: ATL - (PP) ERIC PERRIN 2 (JASON WILLIAMS, ILYA KOVALCHUK)
    7:19

    Thrashers 4, Islanders 1  3rd - 12:41Dec 6 9:09 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 2 3
    NY ISLANDERS 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - (PP) BILL GUERIN 10 (MARK STREIT, DOUG WEIGHT) 0:51
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 11 (GARNET EXELBY, VYACHESLAV KOZLOV)
    17:44
    2ND PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 9 (MARTY REASONER, NATHAN OYSTRICK)
    10:04
    ATL - ERI

    Dec 6 8:39 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 3
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    2ND PRD: ATL - ERIC BOULTON 2 (JOSEPH CRABB, JIM SLATER) 15:23

    Thrashers 3, Islanders 1  2nd - 4:37Dec 6 8:31 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 2
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    2ND PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 9 (MARTY REASONER, NATHAN OYSTRICK)
    10:04

    Thrashers 2, Islanders 1  2nd - 9:56Dec 6 8:21 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATLANTA 1 1
    NY ISLANDERS 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - (PP) BILL GUERIN 10 (MARK STREIT, DOUG WEIGHT) 0:51
    ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 11 (GARNET EXELBY, VYACHESLAV KOZLOV)
    17:44
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ATL 6

    Dec 6 7:46 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 1
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    1ST PRD: ATL - BRYAN LITTLE 11 (GARNET EXELBY, VYACHESLAV KOZLOV)
    17:44

    Thrashers 1, Islanders 1  1st - 2:16Dec 6 7:44 PM


  • NHL
    ATLANTA 0
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    1ST PRD: NYI - (PP) BILL GUERIN 10 (MARK STREIT, DOUG WEIGHT) 0:51

    Thrashers 0, Islanders 1  1st - 19:09Dec 6 7:13 PM
  • 5
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    Silversword55 Added 5 roots

    Thrashers vs. IslandersDec 6 10:46 AM