MONTREAL – Jose Theodore stopped 32 shots and Richard Zednik scored midway through the third period, leading the Montreal Canadiens to a 3-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night.

Defensemen Andrei Markov and Craig Rivet scored power-play goals to help Eastern Conference-leading Montreal extend its winning streak to five games.

Tim Taylor and Vinny Prospal scored for Tampa Bay, which lost its fourth in a row. The losing streak is the defending Stanley Cup champions’ longest since Dec. 9-16, 2003.

Theodore, the league’s top goalie and MVP in 2002, frequently displayed his award-winning form from that season, overshadowing a solid NHL debut by Tampa Bay goalie Brian Eklund.

Rivet scored his second of the season 6:59 into the third to tie it at 2.

Alex Kovalev, who assisted on Rivet’s goal, set up Zednik’s go-ahead goal, sending his linemate in on a partial breakaway. Zednik went to his backhand, flipping a shot past Eklund to bring the sellout crowd of 21,273 out of its seats for the second time in less than three minutes.

Taylor opened the scoring 3:06 in on a play that left Theodore with little chance. Sent in on a pass by defenseman Paul Ranger, Taylor fired his first shot into Theodore before swatting the rebound up and over the goalie’s glove and into the top left corner.

Eklund, a native of Braintree, Mass., who played at Brown University, made 16 saves. He stopped the first seven shots he faced before Markov beat him on a shot from the left point at 10:53.

Predators 3, Oilers 2

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Scott Hartnell scored with 22.5 seconds left and Tomas Vokoun stopped 31 shots in the Nashville Predators’ 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.

The Predators scored all three goals in the third period, including two in the final 1:55, to snap a five-game winless skid.

Kimmo Timonen’s goal following a scrum in front of the crease put Nashville up 2-1, but Edmonton countered when Jason Smith’s shot deflected off Ryan Smyth and past Vokoun with 58.4 seconds left.

Hartnell, who missed several good chances earlier in the game, scored his fourth goal of the season from close range. Greg Johnson flipped the puck at Hartnell, who used his right hand to knock it down, then shoveled it past Jussi Markkanen.

Maple Leafs 6, Capitals 4

TORONTO – Alexei Ponikarovsky, Bryan McCabe, Mats Sundin and Carlo Colaiacovo scored in the third period and the Toronto Maple Leafs rallied for a 6-4 victory over the Washington Capitals.

Alexander Ovechkin scored twice for the Capitals. He also had two goals in Washington’s 5-4 victory over Toronto on Sunday. Ovechkin, the top pick in the 2004 NHL draft, leads all rookies with 12 goals. The 20-year-old Russian has five two-goal games in the first 15 games of his career.

The Maple Leafs fell behind 2-0 to the Washington for the second straight game. But Toronto didn’t falter after tying it this time, scoring three straight in less than three minutes in the third.

Islanders 4, Devils 1

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Rick DiPietro made 25 saves and Shawn Bates had a goal and an assist to help the New York Islanders end a two-game losing streak with a 4-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils.

Mattias Weinhandl, Oleg Kvasha and Jason Blake also scored for the Islanders.

Vladimir Malakhov scored for the Devils, who dropped their fourth straight.

The Islanders took a 2-0 first-period lead on goals by Weinhandl and Bates.

Weinhandl deflected Brad Lukowich’s point shot past Scott Clemmensen at 2:57.

Bates scored from a difficult angle at 11:35. Bates took a shot from the right boards as he drove toward the goal line and the puck slipped past Clemmensen.

Avalanche 5, Sharks 2

DENVER – Pierre Turgeon became the 34th player in league history to reach 500 goals and Alex Tanguay scored twice, lifting the Colorado Avalanche to a 5-2 win over the San Jose Sharks.

Turgeon, in his 18th season, had been waiting for the milestone goal since scoring twice against Vancouver on Oct. 27. He couldn’t have picked a better time to do it, scoring on a two-man advantage midway through the third period to give Colorado a two-goal advantage.

Turgeon was mobbed by teammates after one-timing Marek Svatos’ pass past Sharks goalie Vesa Toskala, then got hugs and slaps on the helmet from the rest as he reached the bench. The fans gave Turgeon a lengthy standing ovation as the “500” flashed on the scoreboard and he responded with a quick raise of the stick.

Coyotes 4, Wild 2

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Curtis Joseph made 26 saves and moved into a tie for eighth place on the NHL’s career wins list and Mike Comrie scored two goals in the Phoenix Coyotes’ 4-2 victory over the Minnesota Wild.

Joseph sparkled through two periods and was shaky in the third, but held on to tie Grant Fuhr with his 403rd career victory.

Fuhr, the former Edmonton star, is the Coyotes’ goalie coach.

The Coyotes took advantage of an unusually poor night from Wild goalie Dwayne Roloson, scoring three goals on their first six shots.

Recently acquired Yanick Lehoux scored his first career goal just over a minute into the first period when his slap shot from the right circle went through Roloson’s legs on the first shot of the game.

Mike Leclerc scored off a rebound 10 minutes later, and Comrie made it 3-0 when he scored on a beautiful pass across the crease from Mike Johnson with 6:30 to go in the period.

Replays appeared to show that Comrie kicked the puck into the net, but the officials allowed the goal after a brief review.

Wild coach Jacques Lemaire replaced Roloson, who made just seven saves on the night, with Manny Fernandez to start the second period. It was the first time Roloson has been pulled from a game since a 3-2 loss to San Jose on Oct. 12, 2003.

The Wild defense tightened in front of Fernandez, and he saved seven of eight shots he faced to keep Minnesota in the game.

The Wild got on the board five minutes into the second when Daniel Tjarnqvist’s slap shot from the point beat Joseph high on his glove side.

Fittingly, it was a power-play goal. The Wild entered the game an NHL-best 31 percent on the power play at home.


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