Bure nets 4 to rescue Panthers, Vernon, 7-5

Sabres rout Maple Leafs

Predators win 4th straight

January 02, 2000|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

Pavel Bure equaled a career high with four goals and Mike Vernon weathered a shaky debut as Florida's goaltender yesterday, helping the Panthers hold off the Tampa Bay Lightning, 7-5.

Bure, scoring at least three goals in a game for the third time this season and 14th time in his career, gave the Panthers the lead for good on a breakaway 18 seconds after Chris Gratton beat Vernon to make it 5-5 with just over 11 minutes to go.

"I said to Pavel: 'Thanks for bailing me out,'" Vernon said, 'It seemed like whoever had the lost shot was going to win that game. I'm sure we'll be better and I'll be better."

Bure also scored four goals against Winnipeg on Oct. 12, 1992.

Vernon, acquired in a trade from San Jose on Thursday, gave up a goal to Vincent Lecavalier 52 seconds into the game. The young Tampa Bay star's second goal made it 4-4 late in the second period.

The loss was the seventh straight for the Lightning.

Sabres 8, Maple Leafs 1: Eric Rasmussen, Maxim Afinogenov and Stu Barnes each scored twice for host Buffalo, which outshot Toronto 35-18.

The Sabres had their highest goal total since an 8-3 victory in Montreal in March 1993 and their first New Year's Day win after a string of four losses and one tie stretching to 1971.

lt was the most goals allowed by the Maple Leafs this season, and the six-goals through two periods matched the most allowed by Curtis Joseph in a game in his two years with Toronto. Joseph went into the game with 1.98 goals-against average and 92.8 save percentage.

Predators 3, Sharks 2: Tom Fitzgerald scored his 100th NHL goal and Thomas Vokoun made 43 saves for his fourth victory in six days, as host Nashville won its team-record fourth straight.

The Predators managed 20 shots and extended their team-record unbeaten streak to eight games (5-0-3). Vokoun had been 0-8-1 until last week.

Devils 2, Bruins 2: Jason Allison scored his second goal of the game at 6:50 of the third period, lifting host Boston to a tie and extending its winless streak to seven (0-5-2)

Hurricanes 4, Thrashers 2: Ron Francis, Sami Kapanen and Paul Ranheim each had a goal and an assist, and Carolina ended a four-game road losing streak.

Oilers 5, Coyotes 4: Doug Weight scored his secorld goal of the game with 1:04 left, and Edmonton rallied from a 4-2 deficit for a rare road victory.

Off the ice

Red Kelly: Hall of Famer Red Kelly was stable at a Toronto hospital yesterday, a day after suffering a heart attack at his home.

Kelly, 71, who lives in Toronto, has experienced heart trouble before. He had just completed 50 push-ups Friday when he felt a sharp pain up his left arm.

Kelly, who played 21 seasons in the NHL, scored 281 goals in 1,316 games and 33 more in 164 playoff games.

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