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Panthers founder Huizenga dies at 80

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

MIAMI (AP) H. Wayne Huizenga, a college dropout who built a business empire that included Blockbuster Entertainment, AutoNation and three professional sports franchises, has died. He was 80.

Huizenga (HY'-zing-ah) died Thursday night at his home, said Valerie Hinkell, a longtime assistant. The cause was cancer, said Bob Henninger, executive vice president of Huizenga Holdings.

Starting with a single garbage truck in 1968, Huzienga built Waste Management Inc. into a Fortune 500 company. He purchased independent sanitation engineering companies, and by the time he took the company public in 1972, he had completed the acquisition of 133 small-time haulers. By 1983, Waste Management was the largest waste disposal company in the United States.


Zito named GM of US men's team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) Bill Zito has been selected as the general manager for the United States men's national hockey team.

Zito is assistant general manager for the Columbus Blue Jackets. USA Hockey announced the appointment Friday, a little over a month before the world hockey championships


AHL Hall of Famer Gamble dies at 89

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) Stanley Cup champion and American Hockey League Hall of Famer Dick Gamble has died. He was 89.

The AHL's Rochester Americans announced his death Friday after learning from his family he died Thursday. Gamble had been living in Pittsford, New York.


Jackets blank Panthers, run now at 10

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Short winning streaks are nothing to the Columbus Blue Jackets. They like getting victories in bunches.

Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 33 shots for his fifth shutout of the season, Cam Atkinson had a goal and an assist, and the Blue Jackets shut out the Florida Panthers 4-0 on Thursday night for their 10th straight win.


Matthews, Leafs end Preds' 14-0-1 surge

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Auston Matthews didn't look rusty in his return from a monthlong layoff.

Matthews had a goal in his first game back from a shoulder injury that sidelined him for 10 games and the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Nashville Predators 5-2 on Thursday night.


Kopitar scores 4 as Kings rout Avalanche

DENVER (AP) Anze Kopitar was asked over and over about scoring four goals. All he wanted to do was talk about earning two points. That's the No. 1 figure on his mind.

"I'm playing for the guys in here. Our goal is to make the playoffs," Kopitar said . "That's all it comes down to."


Sharks beat Knights in OT, run hits 6

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) Seconds after almost costing the San Jose Sharks a game with a turnover, Logan Couture ended it with his backhand.

Couture scored 39 seconds into overtime after getting bailed out by goalie Martin Jones and the San Jose Sharks won their season-high sixth straight game, 2-1 over the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday night.


Grubauer stops 39 as Caps beat Wings 1-0

DETROIT (AP) The Washington Capitals are in first place because of victories like this.

Philipp Grubauer made 39 saves for his third shutout of the season, and Brett Connolly scored the game's only goal on a third-period breakaway to lift the Capitals to a 1-0 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday night. Washington was far from dominant, but the Capitals created the game's best scoring chance and that was enough.


Konecny, Giroux get Flyers past Rangers

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Dave Hakstol is more worried about two points than a pretty performance right now. That said, the Philadelphia Flyers coach and his team have some work to do before the playoffs begin.

Travis Konecny scored twice, Claude Giroux had three assists and Philadelphia beat the New York Rangers 4-3 on Thursday night to pick up an important two points and stay atop the wild-card standings in the Eastern Conference.


McDavid has 4 points as Oilers rip Sens

OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) In five previous games against the Senators, Connor McDavid had yet to score a goal. He more than made up for it on Thursday night.

McDavid had two goals and two assists, and the Edmonton Oilers eliminated Ottawa from playoff contention with a 6-2 win on Thursday night.