NHL roundup: Predators clinch playoff berth

·8 min read

Luke Kunin scored two goals and the host Nashville Predators sealed a playoff spot with a 3-1 win over the Central Division champion Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday.

Predators goaltender Juuse Saros made 21 saves and held a shutout into the third period in what was a preview of a first-round postseason series. The teams conclude the regular season with a rematch Monday night in Nashville.

Kunin scored in the second and third periods for a 2-0 Predators lead. Mikael Granlund assisted on both goals.

Carolina's goal came from Morgan Geekie less than 1 1/2 minutes after Kunin's second goal, but Erik Haula sealed the outcome with an empty-net tally. Carolina goalie Alex Nedeljkovic made 27 saves while taking a loss in regulation for the first time in his past nine outings.

Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 2

Toronto overcame a 2-0 deficit with three straight second-period goals to defeat visiting Montreal and clinch the North Division title.

The Maple Leafs won the final two regular-season games between the teams to take the season series 7-2-1. Jack Campbell made 21 saves for the victory.

Pierre Engvall, William Nylander and Mitchell Marner scored for the Maple Leafs. Brett Kulak and Nick Suzuki scored for the Canadiens, who got 23 saves from Jake Allen.

Oilers 4, Canucks 3

Connor McDavid reached the 100-point mark for the season with one goal and three assists while leading host Edmonton to a victory over Vancouver.

Leon Draisaitl scored twice and Jesse Puljujarvi also tallied in the win. Draisaitl's goals put him over the 500-point plateau for his career. McDavid becomes the first and likely only player in the league this season to reach 100 points, and needed only 53 games to reach it. He's the first player in 25 years to net 100 points in 53 or fewer games and ninth in league history.

J.T. Miller, Travis Boyd and Tyler Graovac scored for the Canucks, who must win their final seven games and have the Montreal Canadiens lose their final two games to make the playoffs. Goalie Thatcher Demko stopped 30 shots in the loss -- his team's seventh in eight games.

Avalanche 3, Kings 2

Devon Toews scored two goals and Colorado topped host Los Angeles for its fifth victory in its last six games.

Cale Makar collected a goal and an assist for the second consecutive night in another win at Los Angeles as the second-place Avalanche pressed on in their late bid at a West Division title. They remain four points behind the Vegas Golden Knights, who beat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Saturday.

Colorado will have a chance to make one last charge for the division title when it plays at Las Vegas on Monday.

Golden Knights 4, Blues 1

Reilly Smith scored the first hat trick of his career to lead Vegas past St. Louis in Las Vegas.

Chandler Stephenson also scored a goal and Alex Pietrangelo added two assists for Vegas. Marc-Andre Fleury made 20 saves to extend his personal winning streak to eight games. Colton Parayko scored a goal and Ville Husso finished with 25 saves for St. Louis, which had an eight-game point streak snapped.

The Golden Knights remained four points ahead of second-place Colorado in the battle for first place in the West Division. The two teams meet for the final time in the regular season on Monday night in Las Vegas.

Coyotes 5, Sharks 4 (OT)

Phil Kessel scored the game-winning goal 2:30 into overtime to lift Arizona over host San Jose. The Sharks had forced overtime when Alexander Barabanov buried the tying goal with 49 seconds left in regulation.

Christian Dvorak scored twice for the Coyotes, and Conor Garland and Jan Jenik had one apiece. Kessel and Christian Fischer each had two assists, and Adin Hill made 44 saves.

Rudolfs Balcers, Kevin Labanc and Timo Meier all found the back of the net for the Sharks. Alexei Melnichuk, making his first NHL start, stopped 27 shots.

Penguins 1, Sabres 0

Jeff Carter scored and goaltender Maxime Lagace stopped all 29 shots he faced to lead Pittsburgh past visiting Buffalo as both teams concluded the regular season.

Several hours later, Pittsburgh clinched the East Division and home-ice advantage for the first round of the playoffs. The Penguins secured first place after they won and the Washington Capitals failed to record a regulation-time victory against the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Sabres finished last not only in the East but also overall in the NHL. Buffalo rookie goalie Michael Houser, pressed into the No. 1 role because of a series of injuries, made 22 saves in his fourth career start.

Panthers 5, Lightning 1

Alex Wennberg scored three goals to lead Florida past Tampa Bay in Sunrise, Fla., and into a two-point lead on the Lightning in the race for home-ice advantage in their Stanley Cup playoffs first-round series.

The two teams conclude the regular season on Monday. Florida needs one point to clinch home ice; Tampa Bay needs a regulation win. Sam Bennett and Jonathan Huberdeau also scored for Florida, and each added an assist. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 28 shots.

The teams amassed a combined 156 minutes of penalty time and nine misconduct penalties. Luke Schenn scored for the Lightning, and Andrei Vasilevskiy took the loss with 30 saves.

Capitals 2, Flyers 1 (OT)

Conor Sheary scored with 59.4 seconds left in overtime as Washington defeated visiting Philadelphia.

Lars Eller scored with 40 seconds left in regulation to force overtime. On the game-winner, Sheary took a quick pass from Nic Dowd and fired a shot that trickled between goalie Alex Lyon's pads.

The injury-depleted Capitals were even more short-handed in this contest. T.J. Oshie appeared to hurt his knee late in the second period and was ruled out with a lower-body injury, leaving Washington with only 10 forwards during the third period and overtime.

Rangers 5, Bruins 4

Mika Zibanejad, Alexis Lafreniere and Vitali Kravtsov scored in a span of less than five minutes during a four-goal third period, and New York completed its season with a victory at Boston.

Zibanejad scored again late, K'Andre Miller also had a goal and Pavel Buchnevich had three assists as the Rangers snapped a five-game losing streak. Keith Kinkaid had 28 saves before exiting during the third with an injury. Igor Shesterkin stopped seven shots the rest of the way for New York.

Nick Ritchie, David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron scored for the Bruins, whose six-game points streak came to an end. Charlie McAvoy had two assists and Tuukka Rask stopped 18 shots.

Islanders 5, Devils 1

Brock Nelson scored twice in a span of 3:40 in the second period as New York scored four unanswered goals in a rout of visiting New Jersey in the final regular-season game at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y.

Jordan Eberle scored late in the first period, and Nelson struck twice by swatting in a pair of rebounds after New Jersey's Andreas Johnsson tied the game less than five minutes into the second. Former Devil Kyle Palmieri and Mathew Barzal scored in a span of 37 seconds early in the third as the Islanders halted a three-game losing streak.

The Islanders moved within two points of the third-place Bruins. The Islanders visit Boston on Monday night for their final regular-season game, but the Bruins also visit the Capitals on Tuesday night.

Senators 4, Jets 2

Tim Stutzle posted his first career hat trick to pace visiting Ottawa to a victory over Winnipeg, handing the Jets their sixth consecutive home defeat.

Connor Brown also scored and added two assists, Shane Pinto collected two assists and Filip Gustavsson made 27 saves for the Senators. Ottawa, which has long been eliminated from playoff contention, is on an 8-1-1 run.

Mason Appleton and Mark Scheifele scored for the Jets, who have lost eight of nine games but remain in third place in the North Division. Goalie Connor Hellebuyck stopped 19 shots.

Blue Jackets 5, Red Wings 4 (OT)

Max Domi scored with 20.4 seconds remaining in overtime and Columbus won its season finale over visiting Detroit.

Domi scored from the slot off a feed from Oliver Bjorkstrand. Cam Atkinson, Bjorkstrand, Eric Robinson and Jack Roslovic scored in regulation for Columbus.

Jakub Vrana, Danny DeKeyser, Sam Gagner and Valtteri Filppula scored for Detroit.

Wild 4, Ducks 3 (OT)

Victor Rask scored with 2:14 left in the extra session to lift Minnesota past Anaheim in St. Paul, Minn.

Jared Spurgeon, Ryan Hartman and Nick Bonino also scored, and Cam Talbot made 19 saves for the Wild, who finished 7-1-0 against the Ducks this season. Kirill Kaprizov had two assists for his 13th multi-point game, adding to his franchise rookie records.

Rickard Rakell and Max Comtois each had a goal and an assist for the Ducks. Ryan Miller made 21 saves in the final game of his 18-year NHL career.

--Field Level Media

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