NEW YORK - Vinny Prospal broke out of a 14-game scoring drought with a pair of goals, and the New York Rangers stretched their winning streak to four games with a 4-1 victory over the Florida Panthers last night.

The Rangers, who earned three straight road wins before returning home, picked up their first victory at Madison Square Garden since Nov. 23 by snapping an 0-4-1 skid there. Captain Chris Drury wiped out the Panthers' early 1-0 lead and then assisted when Marian Gaborik scored his NHL-leading 26th goal on a shorthanded breakaway in the third period to make it 4-1 during a delayed penalty.

The Rangers are on their best streak since winning seven straight following an opening-night loss. They were 0-3-2 before this run.

Florida 1 0 0 – 1

N.Y. Rangers 1 1 2 – 4

First period: 1, Florida, Oreskovich 2 (Moore, Campbell), 4:09. 2, N.Y. Rangers, Drury 5 (Lisin, Avery), 6:22. Penalties: Gaborik, NYR (hooking), 7:36; Duco, Fla (tripping), 11:30; Gaborik, NYR (slashing), 15:19.

Second period: 3, N.Y. Rangers, Prospal 7 (Callahan, Gaborik), 4:55 (pp). Penalties: Campbell, Fla (charging), 4:08; Ballard, Fla (tripping), 7:45.

Third period: 4, N.Y. Rangers, Prospal 8 (Dubinsky, Staal), :23. 5, N.Y. Rangers, Gaborik 26 (Drury), 11:14 (sh). Penalties: Girardi, NYR (hooking), 2:51; McCabe, Fla (hooking), 3:12; Moore, Fla (roughing), 9:44; Avery, NYR (roughing), 9:44; Girardi, NYR (tripping), 9:44; McCabe, Fla (roughing), 15:43; Avery, NYR (roughing), 15:43.

Shots on Goal: Florida 10-15-9–34. N.Y. Rangers 9-14-9–32.

Power-play opportunities: Florida 0 of 4; N.Y. Rangers 1 of 4.

Goalies: Florida, Vokoun 11-11-7 (32 shots-28 saves). N.Y. Rangers, Lundqvist 16-13-3 (34-33).

Referees: Dan Marouelli, Ghislain Hebert. Linesmen: Michel Cormier, David Brisebois.

A: 18,200 (18,200). Time: 2:24.

Wild 3, Oilers 1

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Nicklas Backstrom continued his mastery of Edmonton, stopping 30 shots in Minnesota's win.

Backstrom improved to 14-1 in his career against Edmonton.

Edmonton 1 0 0 – 1

Minnesota 1 1 1 – 3

First period: 1, Minnesota, Brunette 11 (Zidlicky, Koivu), 13:35 (pp). 2, Edmonton, Nilsson 5 (Gilbert), 15:24. Penalties: Stone, Edm, major (fighting), 9:02; Stoner, Min, major (fighting), 9:02; Potulny, Edm (high-sticking), 13:06; Staios, Edm (interference), 15:49.

Second period: 3, Minnesota, Nolan 9 (Belanger, Kobasew), 18:22. Penalties: Brule, Edm (cross-checking), 7:56; Boogaard, Min (cross-checking), 14:30.

Third period: 4, Minnesota, Latendresse 6 (Clutterbuck), 19:54 (en). Penalties: Brule, Edm (high-sticking), :17; Souray, Edm, major (fighting), 1:07; Nolan, Min, major (fighting), 1:07; Johnsson, Min (slashing), 3:48; Nilsson, Edm (roughing), 9:01; Havlat, Min (roughing), 9:01; Penner, Edm (roughing), 10:31; Brodziak, Min (roughing), 10:31; Clutterbuck, Min (roughing), 10:31; Horcoff, Edm (hooking), 13:37.

Shots on Goal: Edmonton 14-9-8–31. Minnesota 10-10-7–27.

Power-play opportunities: Edmonton 0 of 3; Minnesota 1 of 5.

Goalies: Edmonton, Deslauriers 8-8-2 (26 shots-24 saves). Minnesota, Backstrom 16-12-3 (31-30).

Referees: Chris Lee, Brad Watson.

Linesmen: Ryan Galloway, Brian Mach.

A: 18,250 (18,064). Time: 2:18.

Capitals 5, Sabres 2

WASHINGTON - Nicklas Backstrom had two goals, Alex Ovechkin added a goal and two assists, and Washington beat Buffalo in a battle of division leaders.

Buffalo 0 2 0 – 2

Washington 2 1 2 – 5

First period: 1, Washington, Backstrom 13 (Ovechkin, Semin), 1:18. 2, Washington, Green 7 (Fehr, Clark), 6:47. Penalties: Semin, Was (tripping), 8:04.

Second period: 3, Buffalo, Gaustad 7 (Roy, Pominville), 5:04. 4, Washington, Morrison 10 (Fleischmann, Knuble), 10:48. 5, Buffalo, Connolly 7 (Montador, Grier), 12:52. Penalties: Knuble, Was (interference), 2:52; Stafford, Buf (roughing), 3:21; Morrison, Was (interference), 4:08.

Third period: 6, Washington, Backstrom 14 (Semin, Ovechkin), 10:55 (pp). 7, Washington, Ovechkin 24 (Laich, Green), 12:10 (pp). Penalties: Rivet, Buf (hooking), 9:20; Gaustad, Buf (tripping), 10:29.

Shots on Goal: Buffalo 4-20-10–34. Washington 15-14-9–38.

Power-play opportunities: Buffalo 0 of 3; Washington 2 of 2.

Goalies: Buffalo, Miller 21-8-2 (38 shots-33 saves). Washington, Neuvirth 2-2-0 (34-32).

Referees: Paul Devorski, Francois St. Laurent. Linesmen: Pierre Champoux, Tim Nowak.

A: 18,277 (18,277). Time: 2:21.

Canadiens 5,

Hurricanes 1

RALEIGH, N.C. - Ex-Flyer Glen Metropolit scored two power-play goals after Andrei Markov had his third in three games, and Montreal routed Carolina for its third straight victory.

Jaroslav Halak made 46 saves for the Canadiens, who led by 4-1 in the first period. Andrei Kostitsyn and Sergei Kostitsyn added goals.

Montreal 4 1 0 – 5

Carolina 1 0 0 – 1

First period: 1, Montreal, Markov 3 (Plekanec, Bergeron), 1:29 (pp). 2, Montreal, A.Kostitsyn 11 (Cammalleri, Plekanec), 3:42. 3, Carolina, Sutter 8 (Gleason, Carson), 7:21 (pp). 4, Montreal, S.Kostitsyn 1 (Plekanec, Gomez), 9:32. 5, Montreal, Metropolit 9 (Gomez, Gorges), 17:08 (pp). Penalties: A.Ward, Car (boarding), :24; Gomez, Mon (unsportsmanlike conduct, cross-checking), 6:01; Kostopoulos, Car (interference), 15:28.

Second period: 6, Montreal, Metropolit 10 (Gomez, Spacek), 18:03 (pp). Penalties: Moen, Mon (roughing), 9:08; Markov, Mon (delay of game), 10:44; Carolina bench, served by Samsonov (too many men), 11:53; A.Ward, Car (tripping), 16:55.

Third period: None. Penalties: Jokinen, Car (high-sticking), 6:52; Gill, Mon (cross-checking), 9:33.

Shots on Goal: Montreal 11-10-4–25. Carolina 13-18-16–47.

Power-play opportunities: Montreal 3 of 5; Carolina 1 of 5.

Goalies: Montreal, Halak 9-5-0 (47 shots-46 saves). Carolina, C.Ward 4-13-4 (7-4), Legace (9:32 first, 18-16).

Referees: Kevin Pollock, Greg Kimmerly. Linesmen: Mark Pare, Derek Nansen.

A: 14,820 (18,680). Time: 2:23.

Islanders 3,

Maple Leafs 1

UNIONDALE, N.Y. - Trent Hunter and John Tavares scored 90 seconds apart in the second period, and Dwayne Roloson made 26 saves in New York's victory over Toronto.

Blake Comeau was awarded a goal with 34.9 seconds left after being taken down on a breakaway with an empty net.

The Islanders salvaged the final game of a four-game homestand and snapped an overall four-game losing streak at Nassau Coliseum.

Niklas Hagman scored in the third period for Toronto.

Toronto 0 0 1 – 1

N.Y. Islanders 0 2 1 – 3

First period: None. Penalties: Stajan, Tor (tripping), 2:20; Sim, NYI (holding), 17:39.

Second period: 1, N.Y. Islanders, Hunter 7, 10:47. 2, N.Y. Islanders, Tavares 16 (Comeau, Sutton), 12:17. Penalties: Finger, Tor (slashing), 8:44.

Third period: 3, Toronto, Hagman 16 (Grabovski, Kaberle), 1:56. 4, N.Y. Islanders, Comeau 3 (N.Thompson, Park), 19:25 (en). Penalties: Witt, NYI (cross-checking), 7:43; Blake, Tor (interference), 12:17; Kaberle, Tor (delay of game), 19:37.

Shots on Goal: Toronto 5-8-14–27. N.Y. Islanders 7-9-6–22.

Power-play opportunities: Toronto 0 of 2; N.Y. Islanders 0 of 4.

Goalies: Toronto, Gustavsson 7-6-6 (21 shots-19 saves). N.Y. Islanders, Roloson 12-7-5 (27-26).

Referees: Kerry Fraser, Dean Morton. Linesmen: Jean Morin, Brad Kovachik.

A: 10,865 (16,234). Time: 2:17.

Bruins 6, Thrashers 4

BOSTON - Marc Savard, Daniel Paille and Vladimir Sobotka scored in a span of 1 minute, 8 seconds in the first period, and Boston held on to top Atlanta.

The win, the Bruins' second straight since losing four in a row, was Boston's eighth in a row over the Thrashers, who haven't beaten the Bruins since Dec. 29, 2007.

Atlanta 2 0 2 – 4

Boston 3 1 2 – 6

First period: 1, Boston, Savard 9 (Chara, Wideman), 9:44 (pp). 2, Boston, Paille 4 (Recchi, Begin), 10:32. 3, Boston, Sobotka 4 (Thornton, Hunwick), 10:52. 4, Atlanta, Little 4 (Afinogenov), 14:44. 5, Atlanta, Afinogenov 13 (Kovalchuk, Bogosian), 17:28. Penalties: Enstrom, Atl (tripping), 8:43; Begin, Bos (interference), 12:40; Bergeron, Bos (high-sticking), 17:59.

Second period: 6, Boston, Chara 3 (Savard, Wideman), 2:14 (pp). Penalties: Armstrong, Atl (goaltender interference), :28; Reasoner, Atl (tripping), :43; Begin, Bos (slashing), 12:49.

Third period: 7, Boston, Ryder 9 (Bergeron, Savard), 9:32 (pp). 8, Atlanta, Kane 9 (White, Armstrong), 13:58. 9, Atlanta, Kovalchuk 21 (Afinogenov, Antropov), 15:08. 10, Boston, Bergeron 10 (Recchi, Chara), 19:56 (en). Penalties: McQuaid, Bos (roughing), 6:59; Kovalchuk, Atl (tripping), 7:34; Afinogenov, Atl (slashing), 8:17.

Shots on Goal: Atlanta 11-7-11–29. Boston 10-7-14–31.

Power-play opportunities: Atlanta 0 of 4; Boston 3 of 5.

Goalies: Atlanta, Pavelec 9-10-3 (8 shots-5 saves), Hedberg (10:52 first, 22-20). Boston, Thomas 9-8-5 (29-25).

Referees: Stephane Auger, Chris Rooney. Linesmen: Brian Murphy, Anthony Sericolo.

A: 17,565 (17,565). Time: 2:22.

Penguins 8,

Senators 2

PITTSBURGH - Evgeni Malkin had his fourth career hat trick as Pittsburgh routed Ottawa.

Ottawa 1 0 1 – 2

Pittsburgh 1 5 2 – 8

First period: 1, Pittsburgh, Malkin 11 (Crosby, Gonchar), 4:37 (pp). 2, Ottawa, Volchenkov 3 (Regin), 13:05. Penalties: Phillips, Ott (holding), 3:11; Rupp, Pit (hooking), 5:01; Volchenkov, Ott (hooking), 9:09; Fedotenko, Pit (roughing), 15:30; Michalek, Ott (roughing), 15:51; Fedotenko, Pit (slashing), 18:03; Cheechoo, Ott (boarding), 18:42.

Second period: 3, Pittsburgh, Guerin 10 (Kunitz, Gonchar), 1:03 (pp). 4, Pittsburgh, Fedotenko 7 (Staal, Talbot), 7:35. 5, Pittsburgh, Kunitz 5 (Guerin), 11:25. 6, Pittsburgh, Guerin 11 (Crosby, Kunitz), 13:57 (pp). 7, Pittsburgh, Malkin 12 (Kunitz, Guerin), 18:27. Penalties: Cheechoo, Ott (high-sticking), :50; Neil, Ott (charging), 2:43; Rupp, Pit (unsportsmanlike conduct), 2:43; McKee, Pit (tripping), 8:16; Donovan, Ott (goaltender interference), 12:27.

Third period: 8, Pittsburgh, Gonchar 5 (Cooke, Staal), 1:43. 9, Pittsburgh, Malkin 13 (Crosby), 6:33. 10, Ottawa, Kelly 4 (Winchester, Cheechoo), 18:09. Penalties: Neil, Ott, major (fighting), :03; Rupp, Pit, major (fighting), :03; Carkner, Ott, major (fighting), :51; Adams, Pit, major (fighting), :51; Kennedy, Pit (holding), 4:30; Donovan, Ott, minor-misconduct (unsportsmanlike conduct), 8:11; Pittsburgh bench, served by Guerin (too many men), 9:18; Volchenkov, Ott (tripping), 13:42.

Shots on Goal: Ottawa 24-15-8–47. Pittsburgh 9-15-12–36.

Power-play opportunities: Ottawa 0 of 6; Pittsburgh 3 of 8.

Goalies: Ottawa, Leclaire 8-6-1 (24 shots-18 saves), Elliott (0:00 third, 12-10). Pittsburgh, Fleury 22-9-1 (47-45).

Referees: Chris Ciamaga, Stephen Walkom. Linesmen: Derek Amell, Bryan Pancich.

A: 17,132 (16,940). Time: 2:34.

Blackhawks 3,

Red Wings 0

DETROIT - Antti Niemi made 33 saves for his fourth shutout of the season and his career, and Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist to lift Chicago over Detroit.

Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews also scored for Chicago, which also shut out Detroit, 3-0, Sunday night in Chicago behind Cristobal Huet.

Jimmy Howard stopped 28 shots for Detroit, which has gone 2 hours, 21 minutes without a goal.

Chicago 0 1 2 – 3

Detroit 0 0 0 – 0

First period: None. Penalties: Draper, Det (roughing), 4:03; Seabrook, Chi (hooking), 6:01; Toews, Chi (roughing), 6:01; Maltby, Det (roughing), 6:01; Detroit bench, served by Bertuzzi (too many men), 18:56.

Second period: 1, Chicago, Kane 12 (Campbell, Brouwer), :30 (pp). Penalties: Hjalmarsson, Chi (hooking), 4:02; Ladd, Chi (interference), 12:53.

Third period: 2, Chicago, Sharp 11 (Keith, Hossa), 3:47. 3, Chicago, Toews 11 (Keith, Kane), 18:42. Penalties: Byfuglien, Chi (roughing), 3:02; Maltby, Det (roughing), 3:02; Toews, Chi (interference), 4:47; Bertuzzi, Det (slashing), 5:36; Keith, Chi (hooking), 14:00.

Shots on Goal: Chicago 10-10-11–31. Detroit 11-13-9–33.

Power-play opportunities: Chicago 1 of 3; Detroit 0 of 5.

Goalies: Chicago, Niemi 8-1-1 (33 shots-33 saves). Detroit, Howard 11-8-1 (31-28).

Referees: Brian Pochmara, Don Van Massenhoven. Linesmen: Scott Cherrey, Mark Shewchyk.

A: 20,066 (20,066). Time: 2:22.

Stars 3, Blue Jackets 1

DALLAS - James Neal scored twice, Alex Auld made 33 saves, and Dallas beat stumbling Columbus.

Rookie Jamie Benn had a first-period goal, and Brad Richards and Loui Eriksson had two assists each for the Stars, 6-1-2 in their last nine at home.

Columbus' Rick Nash scored his 19th career goal against the Stars, and Steve Mason made 25 saves for the Blue Jackets.

Columbus 1 0 0 – 1

Dallas 1 1 1 – 3

First period: 1, Columbus, Nash 19 (Vermette, Huselius), 11:16. 2, Dallas, Benn 8 (Wandell, Robidas), 17:23. Penalties: Eriksson, Dal (hooking), 4:34; Hejda, Clm (hooking), 12:35.

Second period: 3, Dallas, Neal 17 (Eriksson, Richards), 6:18. Penalties: Fortunus, Dal (high-sticking), 2:55; Morrow, Dal (hooking), 10:31; Chimera, Clm (unsportsmanlike conduct), 16:07; Pahlsson, Clm (roughing), 18:11; Chimera, Clm (unsportsmanlike conduct), 18:11; Ribeiro, Dal (roughing), 18:11; Ott, Dal (unsportsmanlike conduct), 18:11.

Third period: 4, Dallas, Neal 18 (Richards, Eriksson), 10:28. Penalties: Blunden, Clm, major (fighting), :44; Sutherby, Dal, major (fighting), :44; Roy, Clm (interference), 4:04; Tyutin, Clm (tripping), 14:58; Wandell, Dal (slashing), 17:27.

Shots on Goal: Columbus 10-13-11–34. Dallas 9-11-8–28.

Power-play opportunities: Columbus 0 of 4; Dallas 0 of 4.

Goalies: Columbus, Mason 10-13-5 (28 shots-25 saves). Dallas, Auld 5-2-3 (34-33).

Referees: Gord Dwyer, Tom Kowal. Linesmen: Darren Gibbs, Mike Cvik.

A: 16,532 (18,532). Time: 2:28.