Johnson gets shutout with only 11 saves


ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Brent Johnson's first start in three games was
almost like another day off.

Johnson easily earned his fourth shutout, making only 11 saves
as the St. Louis Blues beat the Atlanta Thrashers 3-0 Tuesday
night. He tried to keep himself busy.

"I rimmed it around the boards a lot, got the puck out on the
power play and did my job," Johnson said. "If I didn't have to
make a lot of saves, I was going to try and do something else out

Cory Stillman, Doug Weight and Tyson Nash got goals for the
Blues, who lost 5-0 to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday. This
time around they had stifling defense, holding the Thrashers to two
shots in the first period and seven through two.

"We dominated," Johnson said. "We got embarrassed the last
time and the guys felt really good in here tonight."

The Thrashers weren't arguing.

"I mean, they're the best team in the league," coach Curt
Fraser said. "They're not one of the best teams in the league by
accident. You can't get down on them even one."

Entering the game, St. Louis had lost five of seven. The
Thrashers, who lost 5-4 at Toronto on Monday, are 1-5-1 in their
last seven games entering the Olympic break.

"There really are no excuses," defenseman Jiri Slegr said.
"We need to play a whole lot better than this."

Johnson didn't get much action in posting his first shutout
since Dec. 22 at Florida and the eighth of his career. The
Thrashers' best scoring chance came at about the three-minute mark
of the second period, but Johnson stopped Shean Donovan on a
rebound shot in front.

"I think they only had two scoring chances all night," Johnson
said. "The guys played excellent defensively."

Stillman got the only goal of the first period, scoring his 14th
on a power play at 7:56. Stillman, alone in the slot, faked to Pasi
Nurminen's glove side and then shot to the stick side.

Weight had a goal disallowed at 11:50 of the second because
Keith Tkachuk checked Todd Reirden into Nurminen. But he scored on
a breakaway from Tkachuk at 4:07 later with Johnson getting his
third assist on the play.

Weight said Tkachuk owed him one.

"Definitely," Weight said. "He told me he didn't do it so I
complained for 10 minutes, and then we get in here and it's like
'Oh yeah, I pushed him in.' So I had to go out and apologize to the

Nash got a goal for the Blues' checking line at 3:27 of the
third, scoring during a scramble in front of the net.

Game notes
Two fights broke out with 3:13 to go, and 86 minutes in
penalties were assessed. Chris Pronger of the Blues and Jeff Odgers
of the Thrashers were given game misconducts. It was the first
fight of the season for Pronger, the Blues' captain. ... Blues D
Bryce Salvador returned to the lineup after missing a game with
displaced ribs. ... The Blues are 4-0 against the Thrashers; this
was the only meeting between the teams this season. ... Tkachuk has
10 goals and eight assists in his last 14 games and Weight has 20
points in the last 21 games. ... St. Louis is 26-3-2-2 when scoring
three or more goals, and 17-1-0-1 at home. ... The Thrashers are
3-7-0-1 in the second game when playing on successive days.