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Little leads Thrashers past Islanders
New York Islanders’ Kyle Okposo, left, battles for the puck against Atlanta Thrashers’ Joey Crabb in the first quarter on Tuesday in New York. Atlanta won 4-2. - photo by Julie Jacobson

vs. Hurricanes

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday

Where: Philips Arena, Atlanta

TV, radio: SportSouth; 680-AM

Web site:

UNIONDALE, N.Y. Bryan Little scored his second goal of the game on the power play in third period and the Atlanta Thrashers kept the New York Islanders winless in 10 games with a 4-2 victory Tuesday night.

Little backhanded a rebound of a shot by Ilya Kovalchuk past Joey MacDonald at 7:42 of the third period to give Atlanta its third straight win against New York. It also gave Kovalchuk his 500th NHL point in his 500th game.

Colby Armstrong added an empty netter with 39.1 seconds left. It was his fifth goal in his last five games. Mathieu Schneider also scored for the Thrashers, who got 23 saves from Johan Hedberg. Hedberg evened his record at 6-6-2.

Andy Hilbert and Sean Bergenheim had the Islanders’ goals. New York has not won in December (0-9-1). Joey MacDonald stopped 24 shots for New York.

The Islanders’ last 10-game losing skid was Dec. 22, 1997-Jan. 10, 1998.

The Thrashers moved ahead 1-0 when one-time Islanders defensman Schneider ripped a slap shot from the right point that beat MacDonald to the blocker side at 8:54.

Atlanta increased its lead to 2-0 in the second period. Little buried his 13th goal this season on a second rebound at 6:38.

The Islanders cut the deficit in half at 16:48 when Hilbert took a cross-ice feed and beat Hedberg to the short side.

New York tied it early in the third period with a short-handed goal. On a rush, Bergenheim wound up with the puck in the lower left circle, spun around, and fired a shot that beat Hedberg to the short side 23 seconds in.Notes: This is the only road game for Atlanta in a stretch where they play five of six at home. New York recalled forward Jeff Tambellini from Bridgeport after sending him down for a two-week conditioning stint. Tambellini had two assists and was a minus-9 in 23 games this season.

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