Elias Says ...

A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:


Jordan Staal scored three goals in Pittsburgh's 6-5 win at Toronto. Staal, who was 18 years, 153 days old as of Saturday, became the youngest player in NHL history to record a hat trick. He broke the record held by Jack Hamilton, who was 18 years, 185 days old when he scored four goals for Toronto against the Rangers on Dec. 4, 1943.

• Rookie Mike Smith notched his third NHL shutout in Dallas' 1-0 win over the Ducks. Smith's third shutout came in just the ninth start of his career. In the NHL's "modern era" (since 1943-44, when the center-ice red line was introduced), the only other goaltender to record three shutouts by his ninth career start was Toronto's Ed Chadwick, who did that in his eighth start in 1956.

Mike Smith also tied the Stars franchise record for shutouts in one season by a rookie goaltender (three), a mark set by his current partner, Marty Turco, in 2000-01.

Jaromir Jagr became the 12th player in NHL history to reach the 1,500-point plateau when he produced the second of his three assists in the Rangers' 5-2 win in Washington. Jagr reached 1,500 points in his 1,165th career game. Among the other players to reach that milestone, only three did so in fewer games than Jagr: Wayne Gretzky (620), Mario Lemieux (747) and Marcel Dionne (1,078). Jagr got to 1,500 points one game ahead of Phil Esposito (1,166).

• Ottawa's Ray Emery stopped 37 of 40 Montreal shots on goal in the Senators' win over the Canadiens on Saturday night. Emery has won all six games this season in which he's faced 40 or more shots on goal, posting a 2.82 goals-against average and .934 save percentage in those games. No other NHL goaltender has won more than four games in which he faced 40-plus shots on goal this season.

• Minnesota's Marian Gaborik scored two goals, his 15th and 16th of the season, in the Wild's 5-4 win over the Hurricanes. Gaborik has scored goals in 11 different games this season and Minnesota won all 11. Gaborik's 16 goals are the most by any NHL player who has scored all of his goals in games won by his team this season.

• The Bruins beat the Islanders when defenseman Zdeno Chara scored on Boston's ninth shootout attempt on Saturday night. It was the fifth shootout this season that went at least nine rounds (one 13-rounder, one 11, one 10 and two 9's). Last season, the first NHL campaign in which ties were settled in that manner, there were only two shootouts that lasted nine or more rounds, one of which was the record 15-round marathon between the Rangers and Capitals on Nov. 26, 2005.

• Rookie Anze Kopitar scored two goals in the Kings' 4-1 win in Nashville. It was Kopitar's fourth multiple-goal game this season, the most of any rookie. San Jose's Ryan Clowe and Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin are tied for second with three multiple-goal games each this season.


Dwight Howard's remarkable stretch of field-goal accuracy continued on Saturday night against the Nets, when he shot 11-for-15 from the field and led the Magic with 25 points. Over his last four games Howard is 44-for-52 (.846), the third-highest field-goal percentage over a four game span for any player in NBA history (minimum: 50 FGA). Wilt Chamberlain owns the Gold and the Silver in that category; he was 44-for-50 (.880) and then 49-for-56 (.875) during two separate four-game spans in the 1966-67 season while playing for the Philadelphia 76ers.

• The Jazz trailed the Knicks 87-77 with less than six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter but rallied to win in overtime, 104-102. In the last eight seasons, Utah won only one other game in which it trailed by 10 or more points more than halfway through the fourth quarter -- a 107-105 victory at Charlotte on Nov. 16, 2004.

• Houston beat Charlotte 104-83 on Saturday night after losing 95-74 at Dallas on Friday night. It's the first time this season that an NBA team lost by 20 or more points and then won by 20 or more points on consecutive days.

Rafer Alston had nine steals and eight assists for the Rockets. Only two other active NBA players ever had at least nine steals and eight assists in one game: Allen Iverson (nine steals and 10 assists) in March 2000 and Andre Miller (nine steals and 22 assists) in December 2001.

Chris Paul scored a game-high 23 points in the Hornets' 114-99 win over Memphis. Paul shot 8-for-10 from the field and had 11 assists. Over the last three seasons, only one other NBA player had 10-or-more assists in a game while making at least 80 percent of his shots from the floor (min: 10 FGA): Steve Nash, who did it four times over that period, including twice this season.

• The Grizzlies' loss makes them 0-15 in the second of back-to-back games in 2006-07. Over the last ten seasons only two other teams had streaks that length or longer within one season: the Bulls, who lost 20 such games to start the 2000-01 season, and the Celtics, who lost 17 straight during 1999-2000.


Carson Palmer, who was named the Most Outstanding Player of Saturday night's Pro Bowl, threw a 72-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne and a 42-yarder to Chad Johnson in the AFC's 31-28 victory. Only two other players threw more than one TD pass of 40 or more yards in a Pro Bowl: Philadelphia's Norm Van Brocklin in Jan. 1961 and Peyton Manning in February 2005.

• Reggie Wayne had a 53-yard TD catch in the Super Bowl last Sunday. Wayne is the fifth player with a TD reception in both the Super Bowl and Pro Bowl in the same season. The others to do that were Tony Hill (1978 Cowboys), Gary Clark (1991 Redskins), Michael Irvin (1992 Cowboys) and Yancey Thigpen (1995 Steelers).

Tiki Barber had a one-yard touchdown run to give the NFC a 7-0 lead. If Tiki stays true to his retirement word he'll be the first player to end his NFL career by scoring a touchdown in the Pro Bowl since Jim Brown, who scored three TDs in the January 1966 Pro Bowl.

• Barber was intercepted by Ed Reed to end the opening drive of the game. In the 37-year history of the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl, only one other non-quarterback threw an interception: Marvin Harrison in the Feb. 2004 game.

• Sean Payton was the fifth rookie head coach in the 37-game history of the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl. All five lost the game. The others were Bud Carson (1989 Browns), Barry Switzer (1994 Cowboys), Steve Mariucci (1997 49ers) and Jim Mora (2004 Falcons).