ATLANTA – Jim Slater scored his first career goal and Mike Dunham stopped 24 shots as the Atlanta Thrashers overpowered the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-0 on Wednesday night.

The Thrashers, who entered the game with a plus-36 shot differential through 14 games, outshot the Penguins 20-8 while scoring three goals in the second period.

Overall, the Thrashers outshot the Penguins 39-24.

Marc Savard had a goal and two assists for Atlanta. Marian Hossa, Slava Kozlov and Peter Bondra each had a goal and an assist and Ilya Kovalchuk had two assists for the Thrashers.

Savard set up Slater’s third-period goal for a 4-0 lead.

Slater, the Thrashers’ first-round draft pick in 2002, was recalled from Chicago of the AHL on Oct. 22. He had his first NHL point on an assist at Washington on Nov. 4.

Pittsburgh, held without a win in its first nine games, settled for a 3-2 road trip. With a win, the Penguins would have claimed their best five-game road trip in franchise history.

The Thrashers gave up four second-period goals in a 7-5 loss at Pittsburgh on Oct. 27. Atlanta almost returned the favor following a scoreless opening period Wednesday night, taking a 3-0 lead with goals by Hossa, Savard and Kozlov.

Atlanta scored the first goal of the game about five minutes into the period on a power play when Hossa, denied at the net only seconds earlier, scored on a pass from Kozlov.

The power play followed a two-minute tripping penalty on Pittsburgh’s Mario Lemieux.

Hossa, acquired before the season from the Ottawa Senators for Dany Heatley, has points in 11 of Atlanta’s 15 games.

Savard gave Atlanta a 2-0 lead with his sixth goal, set up by Hossa and Niclas Havelid.

With less than four minutes left in the period, Kozlov took a pass from Kovalchuk and scored from in front of the net for a 3-0 lead.

With the goal and assist, Kozlov extended his team-best point streak to seven games (three goals, eight assists). He has assists in five straight games.

About 11 minutes into the third period, Slater scored his first career goal on a pass from Savard for the Thrashers’ fourth goal. Bondra also was credited with an assist.

The Penguins pulled goalie Sebastien Caron due to an undisclosed injury late in the third period. Backup goalie Jocelyn Thibault quickly gave up a goal to Bondra on Savard’s second assist with less than three minutes left in the game.

Notes: The Penguins did not have a shot on goal in the first 10 minutes of the second period. … The Thrashers improved to 3-4 at home. … The Thrashers recalled goalie Adam Berkhoel from Chicago to provide depth with Steve Shields battling a sore knee. The Thrashers continue to await the return of starter Kari Lehtonen, who has missed more than a month with a groin injury. Lehtonen was placed on injured reserve on Oct. 6 and could return around Thanksgiving.

AP-ES-11-09-05 2140EST


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