Senators thrash Atlanta


Published: Friday, January 3, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 3, 2003 at 1:00 a.m.

OTTAWA (AP) - Marian Hossa had a career-high and team-record four goals _ including three straight in the first period _ to lead the financially troubled Ottawa Senators to an 8-1 victory Thursday night over the Atlanta Thrashers.

Ottawa, which leads the Eastern Conference with 53 points, played its first game since failing to meet its player payroll after a complex refinancing deal fell through two days earlier.

Todd White _ selected earlier in the day as the NHL's player of the month for December _ Jody Hull, Shaun Van Allen and Radek Bonk also scored for the Senators. They have lost just three of their last 26 games (19-3-4-0).

Hossa, who also had an assist, scored on Ottawa's third, fifth and seventh shots for a 4-0 lead and chased Atlanta goalie Byron Dafoe 12:03 in. Hossa got his third hat trick of the season, then added his fourth goal of the game and 25th overall against Milan Hnilicka at 6:02 of the second period.

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