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NHL roundup

Flyers crown Kings

Patrice Bergeron scored the Bruins’ first goal. Patrice Bergeron scored the Bruins’ first goal. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Associated Press / December 31, 2010

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Mike Richards had two goals and two assists, Michael Leighton made 32 saves in a raucous season debut and the Philadelphia Flyers lit up the Kings’ normally sturdy defense in a 7-4 victory at Los Angeles last night.

Danny Briere, James van Riemsdyk and Jeff Carter each had a goal and an assist for the Flyers, who rebounded from consecutive losses by shredding the mistake-prone Kings. Los Angeles gave up 13 goals in back-to-back losses to close a stretch of four games in five days.

Scott Hartnell and Carter also scored during Philadelphia’s four-goal second period that chased Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier.

Ryan Smyth scored two goals for the Kings, who hadn’t allowed more than three goals in any period this season before giving up two four-goal periods in the past two nights to Phoenix and Philadelphia.

Leighton won eight games during the Flyers’ run to the Stanley Cup finals last summer, but hadn’t played since giving up Chicago’s title-winning goal in overtime June 9. He had surgery on a herniated disk in his back last Oct. 20 and did two rehab stints in the AHL.

Lightning 4, Canadiens 1 — Steven Stamkos had two goals and two assists, rookie goalie Cedrick Desjardins won his NHL debut for host Tampa Bay.

Desjardins, a former Montreal minor leaguer obtained by the Lightning in an offseason trade, made 27 saves.

Martin St. Louis and Pavel Kubina also scored for Tampa Bay. The Lightning are 7-1-1 in their last nine games.

Max Pacioretty scored for the Canadiens, who have lost eight of 10. Price was pulled in the third and was replaced by Alex Auld.

Sharks 5, Blackhawks 3 — Joe Thornton broke a tie on a deflection at 7:13 of the third period and visiting San Jose beat Chicago to snap a two-game losing streak.

Thornton, parked in front of the crease, redirected Marc-Edouard Vlasic’s shot from the left point past Marty Turco seven seconds after a San Jose power play ended.

Scott Nichol, Benn Ferriero, Dany Heatley, and Ryane Clowe also scored for the Sharks, who bounced back after blowing a 3-1 lead. Clowe connected into an empty net with 48 seconds left.

Avalanche 4, Oilers 3 — Milan Hejduk scored the lone shootout goal to help Colorado beat host Edmonton and snap a three-game skid.

T.J. Galiardi, Paul Stastny, and Tomas Fleischmann scored in the first 14:49 to stake Colorado to a 3-0 lead, but the Oilers rallied to tie it. Taylor Hall connected in the second period and Ales Hemsky and Andrew Cogliano scored early in the third.

The Oilers have lost five in a row.

Blue Jackets 3, Maple Leafs 2 — Kristian Huselius scored twice and R.J. Umberger added the winner on a third-period power play in Columbus’s victory over host Toronto.

Nikolai Kulemin and Tyler Bozak scored for the Maple Leafs. Columbus goalie Steve Mason stopped 20 of 22 shots. Jonas Gustavsson made 29 saves for Toronto.

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