West Wins Shootout

Archived from 2002-03 season.

NHL teams

Dany Heatley of the Atlanta Thrashers scored four goals and added an assist as the Western Conference beat the Eastern Conference 6-5 in the 2003 NHL All-Star game in Sunrise, Fla.

The game was tied after regulation and neither team scored in the five-minute overtime. The West beat the East 3-1 in a shootout to win the game. Heatley scored in that event, too, but it didn't add to his total or the final score.

"I was pretty relaxed," Heatley said. "After I got the first one I was pretty happy. After that, they kept going in. I kept cruising around and shooting the puck."

At 22 years, 12 days, Heatley became the youngest player with an All-Star hat trick. Gretzky was a day older when he did it in 1983. The Great One visited Heatley between the second and third periods and encouraged him to break the goals record, too.

"It was very meaningful," Heatley said. "It was great to see him."

"He put on quite a show today for a 22-year-old kid," said Jeremy Roenick, Philadelphia's 33-year-old forward. "He carried some of us old guys. It was impressive to watch."

The score was 5-5 after overtime, setting up the shootout to determine winner. The West won 6-5 when Markus Naslund, Bill Guerin and Paul Kariya scored in the shootout against goalie Patrick Lalime. Only Heatley scored for the East against goalie Marty Turco.

"You heard the fans, they didn't want to go home without somebody winning this game," Turco said. "They wanted the East to win, but they were definitely excited and that got me pumped."

Players on both sides said that, unlike the cruise control level of most All-Star games, both teams really wanted to win this one.

"All of a sudden, with 12 to 15 minutes to go, everybody was getting in front of everything, there was a little more stick work and the competitive juices got flowing," the West's Al MacInnis said.

The East-West format was back for the first time since 1997 after five years of World vs. North America.

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