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October 10, 2009

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Home » Sports » Ice Hockey

Heatley does the trick for Sharks

DANY Heatley made quite a first impression on his new fans.

Heatley scored three goals in his home debut for San Jose to lead the Sharks to a 6-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday night in California.

"It was a great night," Heatley said. "The crowd was great from the introductions on. As a group we played real well tonight, we skated well, forechecked well and got rewarded for it."

Heatley, the big goal scorer acquired last month from Ottawa, got a loud ovation in pregame introductions before San Jose's home opener. The cheers only got louder with his two goals in the second period and a penalty shot in the third that sent scores of hats flying onto the ice and began chants of "Dan-y Heat-ley! Dan-y Heat-ley!"

"For this crowd to cheer his name, he's found a nice home here," Sharks center Joe Thornton said. "I'm sure they're going to see him raise his hands quite a bit this year."

Dan Boyle added a goal and two assists, and Thornton tied a franchise record with four assists for the Sharks, who lost two of three on the road to open the season.

Rick Nash, Jason Chimera and Raffi Torres scored for the Blue Jackets, who lost their first game after opening the season with two straight victories.

Columbus has won once in 17 trips to San Jose. "Their team played hungrier and desperate hockey," Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We matched it for 35 minutes but we couldn't match it for 60. We couldn't carry it through."

The Sharks gave their fans plenty to cheer about in the second period that featured four San Jose goals and a pair of fights.

After Boyle tied the game with his goal, Heatley got into the action by making a strong move from behind the net before beating Steve Mason with a shot into the top of the net.

"That's what we got him for," Boyle said. "He certainly delivered tonight. It's great for him to get off to a great start at home."

In other games, it was: Penguins 5, Flyers 4; Rangers 4, Capitals 3; Flames 4, Oilers 3 (in a shootout); Thrashers 4, Blues 2; Predators 3, Avalanche 2; Sabres 2, Coyotes 1; Senators 3, Islanders 2 (in overtime); Kings 6, Wild 3; Ducks 6, Bruins 1; Red Wings 3, Blackhawks 2; and Devils 4, Lightning 3 (in SO).

In Philadelphia, the Pittsburgh Penguins handed the Flyers their first loss of the new NHL season.

Stanley Cup champs

Bill Guerin and Alex Goligoski scored midway through the second period to help the Stanley Cup champs recover after their first loss of the season the previous day.

In Washington, Marian Gaborik scored two goals about 2-1/2 minutes apart in the third period to lift the New York Rangers over the Washington Capitals.

Washington led 3-2 in the third period before Gaborik tied the game at the 8:09 mark. He then put New York ahead at 10:42 on the powerplay.

Caps' Alex Ovechkin entered the game with five goals and four assists in the opening three games, but was held scoreless.

In Edmonton, Alberta, Nigel Dawes and Olli Jokinen scored in the shootout to give Calgary its second comeback victory in Edmonton this season. With the Oilers holding a 3-2 lead, Calgary pulled its goalie and scored with 1.5 seconds left in regulation time when Jay Bouwmeester's shot from the point was tipped in by Rene Bourque.


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