The stats supported Toronto coach Ron Wilson's decision to send his backup goalie in for the shootout. The results just didn't agree.
With the Maple Leafs and Anaheim Ducks tied after overtime, Wilson had Curtis Joseph replace Vesa Toskala. The coach said Joseph was only allowing 28 percent of shooters to score, while Toskala allowed goals 54 percent of the time.
Of course, after Tuesday night's shootout, Joseph's numbers got a little worse - he gave up goals by Corey Perry and Teemu Selanne in the Ducks' 3-2 win.
``I was playing the percentages,'' Wilson said. ``I'm not going to hesitate to do that until we get Tosk a little more practice - a different way of thinking on stopping the other team in shootouts. I had nothing to lose.''
In other NHL games Tuesday night, it was Tampa Bay 3, Atlanta 2 in overtime; Calgary 2, Washington 1; Buffalo 3, Boston 2 in a shootout; and Columbus 4, Ottawa 2.
``I don't have any problem at all,'' Toskala said. ``As a team we just have to find a way to get those points because they're going to be huge (at the) end of the season. Today we were trying this - it didn't work.''
They might have been the only ones at the Air Canada Centre not surprised by the move.
``I've never seen it happen before,'' Perry said. ``I saw (Joseph) warming up and I turned to the bench and said, 'They're putting him in?'''
He and Selanne each beat Joseph with quick shots while Toronto's Nikolai Kulemin and Tomas Kaberle both missed the net with their shootout opportunities.
Even after watching the first 65 minutes from the bench, Joseph didn't mind being called on.
``It's entertainment, right?'' he said. ``I have had some success at shootouts but those were two good shots. I've got to like being in that position, at least you can come in and you've got a chance.
``Unfortunately, the quick releases look a little quicker when you've been sitting.''
Francois Beauchemin and George Parros scored in regulation for Anaheim and Nik Antropov scored both goals for the Maple Leafs.
With the Leafs down 2-1, Antropov scored with 52.8 seconds left in the third period to force overtime.
Lightning 3, Thrashers 2, OT
Melrose's first season with the Lightning started with five losses, including three in overtime or a shootout. It was his first NHL win since 1995, when he was coaching the Los Angeles Kings.
Flames 2, Capitals 1
In Calgary, Alberta, Jarome Iginla scored and Matthew Lombardi put the Flames ahead for good in the second period to help Calgary to its first win over Washington since 1999.
Calgary overcame a nine-minute power play by Washington. Sergei Fedorov scored for the Capitals, who lost in regulation for the first time since the season opener.
Fedorov's goal was No. 473 of his career, tying him with Alexander Mogilny for most career NHL goals by a Russian-born player.
Miikka Kiprusoff made 30 saves for the Flames, who were 0-6-2 against the Caps since March 13, 1999.
Sabres 3, Bruins 2, SO
In Buffalo, N.Y., Thomas Vanek scored the decisive shootout goal and Ryan Miller stopped four of five chances to cap the Buffalo Sabres' come-from-behind victory.
Drew Stafford and Clarke MacArthur scored in regulation, helping Buffalo improve to 5-0-1.
After Stafford and Boston's David Krejci traded shootout goals, Vanek scored with a nifty move. Driving to the net, he faked a shot and let the puck float at his skates for a second, before beating Manny Fernandez on the glove side.
Blue Jackets 4, Canucks 2
first NHL goal and Rick Nash added an empty netter.
Nash also assisted on Kristian Huselius' goal and Jason Chimera scored for Columbus, which improved to 2-0 at home. Rookie Jake Voracek had two assists.
Pascal Leclaire made 24 saves - several during a penalty kill late in the third period - in his return after missing one game with a bruised hand.
Kyle Wellwood, called up to the injury-riddled Canucks before the game, had a goal and an assist and Kevin Bieksa also scored for Vancouver, which lost its third straight to finish a six-game road trip 2-4.

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