Thomas Vanek scored a pair of third-period goals, including one with 1.9 seconds left, and Jason Pominville scored the deciding goal in the shootout to lift the Buffalo Sabres over the Montreal Canadiens, 5-4. Vanek also scored in the first round of the shootout for the Sabres, who avenged a 6-1 loss to Montreal last Saturday. Tyler Ennis added a goal and two assists, while Steve Ott had a goal and an assist. Ryan Miller made 28 saves for Buffalo, which snapped a three-game skid. Tomas Plekanec scored a pair of goals for the Canadiens, who have lost two straight since a two-game win streak. Brendan Gallagher and P.K. Subban also lit the lamp. Peter Budaj stopped 36-of-40 shots in defeat.
Final Score: New Jersey 4, Tampa Bay 2
Newark, NJ (Sports Network) - Patrik Elias recorded a goal and two assists on Thursday, as the New Jersey Devils defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning, 4-2, at Prudential Center. Ilya Kovalchuk and Andy Greene each added a goal and an assist, while Adam Henrique also lit the lamp for the Devils, who have won three straight. Martin Brodeur saved 17 shots in the victory. Nate Thompson and Matt Carle each scored once for the Lightning, who have lost three straight on the heels of a five-game winning streak. Anders Lindback was charged for all four goals on 27 shots in the setback.
Final Score: NY Rangers 4, NY Islanders 1
New York, NY (Sports Network) - J.T. Miller had a dazzling Madison Square Garden debut and Henrik Lundqvist delivered a strong performance between the pipes as the New York Rangers came through with a 4-1 victory over the New York Islanders Miller, a 2011 first-round pick playing in just his second NHL game, scored his first two career goals to help the Rangers rebound from Tuesday's 3-1 loss at New Jersey while handed their slumping crosstown rivals a third consecutive defeat. Marian Gaborik and Ryan McDonagh added goals to back a 27-save effort from Lundqvist, with McDonagh also notching an assist and Marc Staal contributing two helpers to the win. John Tavares netted the lone goal for the Islanders, who made headlines prior to the game by acquiring the rights to idle goaltender Tim Thomas in a trade with the Boston Bruins.
Final Score: Florida 3, Philadelphia 2 (SO)
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Jonathan Huberdeau was credited with the winner in a shootout, as the Florida Panthers downed the Philadelphia Flyers, 3-2, on Thursday. The rookie Huberdeau opened the deciding stanza by scoring after fooling Ilya Bryzgalov with several stick moves. Peter Mueller also tallied in Florida's next chance, while Jose Theodore turned away Matt Read and Claude Giroux to win the contest. Jack Skille and Stephen Weiss scored in regulation for the Panthers, who have won three of four. Theodore ended up with 30 saves. Read and Jakub Voracek tallied for the Flyers, who have lost four of their last six. Bryzgalov stopped 22 shots in defeat.
Final Score: Pittsburgh 5, Washington 2
Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin each posted a goal and two assists as a big second period led Pittsburgh to a 5-2 win over Washington. James Neal posted a goal and an assist while Pascal Dupuis and Matt Cooke each lit the lamp for the Penguins, who have won five consecutive games. Marc-Andre Fleury posted 23 saves in the win. Alex Ovechkin and Mike Ribeiro each notched a goal and a helper for the Capitals, who have dropped three straight and five of six. Michal Neuvirth gave up two goals on 11 shots before being pulled in the second period. Braden Holtby allowed three tallies on 17 shots in relief.
Final Score: Calgary 4, Columbus 3 (OT)
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Alex Tanguay netted the decisive goal 1:07 into overtime to lift the Calgary Flames over the Columbus Blue Jackets, 4-3, at Nationwide Arena. Roman Cervenka, Mikael Backlund and Lee Stempniak also scored for the Flames, who have won two straight games for the first time this season. Leland Irving got the start in place of an injured Miikka Kiprusoff and made 26 saves to earn the win. Mark Letestu and Vinny Prospal each had a goal and an assist and Matt Calvert also lit the lamp for Columbus, which has dropped two straight and four of its last five. Sergei Bobrovsky allowed all four goals on 30 shots.