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NHL ROUNDUP : Savard Makes It His Night

March 06, 1994|From Associated Press

There was a time when Denis Savard was an automatic 100-point player, but that was with Chicago more than a half-decade ago.

Montreal got some good minutes from him, but he dropped to 16 goals and 34 assists last season. That made him expendable.

But he was still appealing to the Tampa Bay Lightning, and on Saturday, Savard got a goal, his 12th of the season, and two assists in a 4-2 victory over Hartford on at St. Petersburg, Fla.

The victory, before 21,178 at the ThunderDome, moved Tampa Bay (25-34-8) within five points of the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. The Whalers dropped to 22-37-7.

Savard, 33, was honored for recently playing in his 1,000th NHL game.

"He's an awesome hockey player," Hartford captain Pat Verbeek said.

Whaler Coach Pierre McGuire agreed.

"Savard is good with the puck, he's clever and he plays with a lot of enthusiasm," McGuire said. "We were too casual with the puck tonight. We're a young team and we made young mistakes."

Savard, who remained at home to rest during a recent Lightning trip, said he's back in form.

"My confidence is back and the team is playing well," he said. "We're close to a playoff berth and we can't get too high or too low. We've got to stay on an even keel."

New York Rangers 5, New York Islanders 4--Sergei Zubov's power-play goal with 1:03 to play gave the Rangers their first victory at Nassau Coliseum in 16 tries.

The Rangers extended their streak of scoring at least one power-play goal in 13 consecutive games. The Islanders ended a run of penalty killing at home, going 57 in a row before Zubov scored.

New Jersey 6, Calgary 3--Stephane Richer capped a four-goal second period by scoring twice and the Devils took advantage of almost every Calgary turnover at East Rutherford, N.J., for their fourth victory in a row.

Boston 6, Ottawa 1--Cam Neely scored his league-leading 48th goal at Boston as the Bruins rolled to their fifth victory in a row.

Ottawa, winless in 17 consecutive games, has not beaten Boston in nine tries since entering the league last season.

Neely raced around the Senator defense and hit the net for his 600th NHL point on a power play at 16:41 of the first period.

Quebec 4, Toronto 1--Joe Sakic scored a goal and added two assists to lead the Nordiques at home.

The victory left Quebec (25-24-5) eight points from the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 20 games remaining.

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