WASHINGTON – Sidney Crosby extended his points streak to 23 games with a goal and an assist, and Pascal Dupuis scored the decisive goal in the seventh round of a shootout to give the Pittsburgh Penguins a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals on Thursday night in a Winter Classic preview.
Crosby, the NHL’s leading scorer with 60 points on 29 goals and 31 assists in 36 games, has the NHL’s longest points streak since 1992-93 when Quebec’s Mats Sundin had a 30-game run.
Chris Kunitz also scored to help the Penguins win their third straight and 15th in 17 games.
Dupuis converted a wrister from the inside edge of the right circle, ending the shootout after Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury used his skate to block Mike Green’s drive at the right post for his sixth straight save.
Green and Mike Knuble scored in regulation for the Capitals, who had a two-game winning streak snapped.
NEWARK, N.J. (AP)—Josh Bailey had two goals and an assist and New York spoiled Jacques Lemaire’s return behind New Jersey’s bench following the firing if rookie coach John MacLean.
The Islanders, who were tied for the worst record with New Jersey, scored three times in the opening 11 minutes with Bailey getting the first two and John Tavares adding the other.
Dwayne Roloson had 34 saves, and Frans Nielsen and Blake Comeau scored as the Islanders won their second in two nights and extended their points streak to four games (3-0-1).
Travis Zajac scored for the Devils, who have lost four straight and nine of 10 this month in taking over sole possession of last place in the NHL. They have been outscored 20-4 in the last four games and Martin Brodeur looked old and ordinary in giving up five goals on 14 shots in his 1,100 career game.
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP)—Joe Thornton and Dan Boyle scored power-play goals in the second period to help San Jose win its season-high fourth straight game.
Patrick Marleau added a pair of goals in the third period for last season’s Western Conference runner-ups, who are finally hitting their stride after an up-and-down start to the campaign.
Antti Niemi made 24 saves for the win after watching Antero Niittymaki earn the first three victories during the streak. San Jose has moved up to fourth place in the conference with the four straight wins.
Ray Whitney, the only active player remaining from the Sharks’ original 1991-92 team, scored the lone goal for the Coyotes, 1-3-1 on their six-game trip.
BOSTON (AP)—Shawn Thornton scored twice for his career high seventh goal of the season and also had an early fight in Boston’s victory over Atlanta.
Patrice Bergeron had a goal and two assists, Michael Ryder also scored and Tim Thomas made 26 saves for Boston to improve to 16-4-3. Dustin Byfuglien scored his 13th goal of the season for Atlanta.
A melee broke out with 4:06 left to play, with only the goalies sitting out the fracas as all 10 skaters on the ice went at it. Five players received game misconducts and Boston’s Milan Lucic got a match penalty.
DALLAS (AP)—Alex Tanguay converted in the second round of the shootout after scoring late in regulation, Miikka Kiprusoff stopped all three Dallas shooters, and Calgary snapped a three-game losing streak.
Tanguay beat Kari Lehtonen for the only goal in the tiebreaker. Kiprusoff stopped Loui Eriksson and Brad Richards in the first two rounds, and Dallas’ Mike Ribeiro failed to get off a clean shot in the third round.
Brenden Morrow had given the Stars a 2-1 lead at 2:41 of the third period, knocking the rebound of his own shot past Kiprusoff. But with Kiprusoff on the bench for a sixth attacker, Tanguay tied it with 1:21 left in regulation on a wrist shot from the high slot that beat Lehtonen to the stick side.
Ribeiro scored a power-play goal and Lehtonen stopped 31 shots for the Stars, 10-0-3 in their last 13 at home. Kiprusoff made 14 saves and Anton Babchuk scored on the power play for the Flames.
LOS ANGELES (AP)—Jarret Stoll scored the deciding goal in the sixth round of a shootout, defenceman Jack Johnson had a goal and an assist and Justin Williams connected on a power play, leading Los Angeles.
Jonathan Quick made 27 saves for Los Angeles, back home after a five-game trip in which he posted two shutouts. The Kings are 12-2-1 at Staples Center, matching the best home start in franchise history.
Rookie Taylor Hall scored a power-play goal and Jean-Francois Jacques had his first goal of the season for the Oilers, who had won their previous five games at Staples Center—all in shootouts.
NEW YORK (AP)—Ryan Malone scored in the 11th round of a shootout, and Tampa Bay bounced back to beat new York after giving up a goal late in the third period.
Rangers rookie Derek Stepan scored for the third straight game to tie it with 8:42 left in regulation, but New York couldn’t finish the comeback. The shootout was tied 2-2 after three rounds, and the next 15 shooters were denied until Malone won it with a drive that caromed in off the post.
Steven Stamkos scored his 27th goal, and Martin St. Louis added a goal and assist, and Vincent Lecavalier also scored for the Lightning, who won for the fifth win in six games.
Ruslan Fedotenko and Alex Frolov scored 12 seconds apart in the first for New York.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP)—Henrik Sedin had a goal and three assists to match his career high with four points and Vancouver raced to a 6-0 lead to rout Columbus.
Daniel Sedin and Alex Burrows each had a goal and two assists, Raffi Torres scored twice, and Christian Erhoff and Ryan Kesler also scored for Vancouver. Backup goalie Cory Schneider made 24 saves to improve to 4-0-2 for the Canucks, who have won 10 of their last 13.
R.J. Umberger had two goals and Tom Sestito also scored for Columbus.
ST. LOUIS (AP)—Patrik Berglund broke a 10-game scoring drought with two goals, and Jaroslav Halak stopped 35 shots for St. Louis to improve to 13-10-4.
Berglund scored twice in 4:20 span in the first period to break a 1-1 tie.
Erik Johnson and Matt D’Agostini also scored for the Blues, who won for the third time in five games.
Johan Franzen, Nicklas Lidstrom and Patrick Eaves scored for Detroit. Detroit goalie Chris Osgood failed again to become the 10th NHL goalie to reach 400 victories.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP)—Alexandre Picard and Andrei Kostitsyn scored during a pivotal power play to help Montreal snap a two-game losing streak.
Scott Gomez had a goal and an assist, while Jaroslav Spacek had two assists and drew the game-changing penalty. Carey Price stopped 22 shots—including all 10 he saw in the third period—for Montreal, which took control during the 5-minute power play awarded following Erik Cole’s major boarding penalty.
Cole and Chad LaRose scored for Carolina.
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP)—Jason Garrison snapped a third-period tie, and Chris Higgins scored twice to help Florida beat Buffalo for its third victory in four games.
Stephen Weiss had a goal and assist, and Tomas Vokoun finished with 45 saves for Florida.
Jordan Leopold scored twice, and Jason Pominville had a goal and assist for Buffalo.
DENVER (AP)—Matt Cullen had two goals and an assist, Niklas Backstrom made 36 saves and Minnesota beat Colorado for its third straight victory.
Andrew Brunette also scored for the Wild. David Jones scored for the Avalanche.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)—Alex Kovalev and Nick Foligno scored and Brian Elliott made 25 saves for Ottawa.
Marcel Goc scored for Nashville. The Predators have lost three straight games.