Canadians take All-Star Game, 9-4

WINNIPEG, Man. … The Canadian AHL All-Star team got two goals each from Martin St. Pierre and Donald MacLean and a 33-save effort from its trio of goaltenders in a 9-4 win over the PlanetUSA AHL All-Stars at the 2006 AHL All-Star Game tonight in Winnipeg.

The game was witnessed by a capacity crowd of 15,015 fans at the MTS Centre – the largest crowd ever for an AHL All-Star Game – as well as national television audiences in Canada on Rogers Sportsnet and the United States on a series of regional networks.

Wade Flaherty of the hometown Manitoba Moose and Yann Danis of the Hamilton Bulldogs were named co-winners of the Rbk Hockey Most Valuable Player award for the game. The two Canadian netminders each made 12 saves on 13 shots in one period of work.

Dany Sabourin of the league-leading Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins played the third period for the Canadians and made nine saves of his own.

St. Pierre, of the Norfolk Admirals, and MacLean, the AHL’s leading goal-scorer at the All-Star break with 32 for the Grand Rapids Griffins, both scored during a five-goal second period for the Canadians. Defenseman Nathan Paetsch of the Rochester Americans recorded three assists, while Syracuse’s Mark Hartigan, Binghamton’s Denis Hamel, Iowa’s Junior Lessard and Omaha’s Richie Regehr each contributed a goal and an assist for the Canadians, who have won the event in six of the last seven years.

Jimmy Roy of the Moose, captain of the Canadian AHL All-Star team, scored late in the third period to give his team the lead for good.

John Pohl of the Toronto Marlies led the PlanetUSA offense with two third-period goals. PlanetUSA captain Eric Healey of the Providence Bruins added a goal and an assist, and Houston Aeros rookie Patrick O’Sullivan also scored.

The road to the 2006 Calder Cup Playoffs continues when the American Hockey League’s 70th season resumes with 12 games on Friday night.