ATLANTA – Eric Perrin and Slava Kozlov scored on Atlanta’s first two shootout opportunities and the Thrashers beat the Washington Capitals 3-2 on Wednesday night.

Kari Lehtonen stopped 39 shots before denying Washington’s Alexander Semin and Boyd Gordon in the shootout. Lehtonen, who also had an assist, made a glove save on Gordon’s shot to finish the win.

The win left Atlanta, Washington and Carolina tied for first in the Southeast Division.

The Thrashers improved to 7-4 in shootouts and 13-4 in overtime. They were only 1:21 away from winning 2-1 in regulation, but Alex Ovechkin scored his NHL-leading 48th goal from the left circle to overtime.

Marian Hossa had a goal and an assist in possibly his final Atlanta home game.

Lehtonen set up Hossa’s goal in the final minute of the second period. Hossa also had an assist on Eric Perrin’s goal earlier in the second.

Viktor Kozlov gave Washington a 1-0 lead early in the second. The Thrashers answered with two goals in the final four minutes of the period.

Hossa and the Thrashers will not play another home game until Feb. 28, two days after the NHL’s Feb. 26 trade deadline. Thrashers general manager and interim coach Don Waddell said Wednesday he still hopes to re-sign Hossa, but he acknowledged a trade is an option.

AP-ES-02-13-08 2155EST


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