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Thrashers center has happy homecoming

Thrashers 5, Maple Leafs 2

Glen Metro-polit had the game of his life in front of tons of family and friends. Metropolit scored and assisted on two of Atlanta's five third-period goals as the Thrashers rallied for a season-high fifth straight win.

Vyacheslav Kozlov scored twice and Marian Hossa scored his league-leading 21st goal for the Thrashers, who rallied after trailing 2-0.

Metropolit - raised in Toronto - scored the first goal and assisted on the next two.

He's back in the NHL this year after playing three years in Europe.

"Everyone came out of the woodwork here. Kids from high school were up there. I saw faces. It was so rewarding getting a goal," said Metropolit, who was briefly a Lightning player in 2001-02. "It was special. Everyone lives vicariously through me."

"Metro was the difference," coach Bob Hartley said. "Metro skated very well and opened it up for us. It's nice to see.''

Panthers 3, Penguins 2

PITTSBURGH - The Panthers and captain Olli Jokinen stopped two seemingly endless streaks in the same night.

Jokinen's first road goal of the season helped Florida halt a six-game losing streak.

A few minutes after Sidney Crosby tied it at 2 in the third with a highlight-reel goal for Pittsburgh, Jokinen's slap shot from above the right circle on a power play won it. It was Florida's first victory since beating Boston 3-2 on Nov. 20.

Senators 4, Islanders 2

UNIONDALE, N.Y. - Ottawa suddenly went from slumping to sizzling. Even with Martin Gerber getting the start over No. 1 goalie Ray Emery, the Senators didn't slow down. They won their fourth straight and for the eighth time in nine outings as a 6-10-1 start fades into the distance. Captain Daniel Alfredsson was forced out in the third with a leg injury.

Wild 3, Hawks 2

Wild won shootout, 3-2

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Pierre Marc-Bouchard scored the winning goal in a shootout as the Wild snapped a four-game losing streak.

Around the league

BLUES: The team retired Brett Hull's No. 16 and arranged to name a street after him outside its arena. Hull and his father Bobby are the only father-son combination to each score 600 goals and 1,000 points, and now they're the only father and son to have their jerseys retired in any sport.

BLACKHAWKS: The team extended coach Denis Savard's contract through the 2007-08 season. Savard, who had been an assistant for Chicago, took over Nov. 27 when Trent Yawney was fired. The Blackhawks are 3-0 since the change.

ISLANDERS: Forward Trent Hunter will miss 2-4 weeks with a sprained knee.

LEAGUE MEETINGS: Officials decided there will be no immediate changes in regular-season scheduling or in the way playoffs matches are determined. League and team officials met for two days in Palm Beach, discussing having teams play fewer in-conference games.

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