NHL recap: Predators win playoff spot

Luke Kunin scored two goals and hosts Nashville Predators secured a playoff spot on Saturday with a 3-1 win over Central Division champions Carolina Hurricanes.

Predator goalkeeper Juuse Saros made 21 saves and held a shutout in the third period in a preview of a postseason streak in the first round. The teams end the regular season with a rematch on Monday night in Nashville.

Kunin gave Predators a 2-0 lead in the second and third periods. Mikael Granlund supported 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 result with an empty net record. Carolina goalkeeper Alex Nedeljkovic made 27 saves while losing regulation for the first time in his last nine games.

Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 2

Toronto overcame a 2-0 deficit with three goals in the second half to beat Montreal and claim the North Division title.

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

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

Oiler 4, Canucks 3

Connor McDavid hit the season’s 100-point mark with one goal and three assists, leading hosts Edmonton to a win over Vancouver.

Leon Draisaitl scored twice and Jesse Puljujarvi won too. Draisaitl’s goals brought him over the 500-point plateau for his career. McDavid is the first and likely only player in the league to reach 100 points this season and only takes 53 games to get there. He is the first player in 25 years to score 100 points in 53 games or fewer, and the ninth in the league’s history.

JT Miller, Travis Boyd and Tyler Graovac scored a goal for the Canucks, who will have to win their last seven games and the Montreal Canadiens will have to lose their last two games to advance to the playoffs. Goalkeeper Thatcher Demko stopped 30 shots in the defeat – the seventh of his team in eight games.

Avalanche 3, kings 2

Devon Toews scored two goals and Colorado beat hosts Los Angeles for the fifth time in their last six games.

Cale Makar racked up a goal and assist in another win in Los Angeles for the second straight year as runner-up Avalanche continued their late offer for a title in the West Division. They stay four points behind the Vegas Golden Knights, who beat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Saturday.

Colorado will have a chance to collect one final fee for the division’s title when it plays in Las Vegas on Monday.

Golden Knights 4, Blues 1

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

Chandler Stephenson also scored and Alex Pietrangelo added two assists for Vegas. Marc-Andre Fleury made 20 saves to expand his personal winning streak to eight games. Colton Parayko scored one goal and Ville Husso finished the game with 25 saves for St. Louis.

The Golden Knights stayed four points ahead of second-placed Colorado in the battle for first place in the West Division. The two teams will meet for the last time of the regular season in Las Vegas on Monday evening.

Coyotes 5, Sharks 4 (OT)

Phil Kessel scored the winning goal 2:30 in overtime to lift Arizona over hosts San Jose. The Sharks had forced overtime when Alexander Barabanov buried the tie target with a 49 second lead.

Christian Dvorak scored twice for the Coyotes, and Conor Garland and Jan Jenik had one goal each. Kessel and Christian Fischer each had two assists, and Adin Hill scored 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, sabers 0

Jeff Carter scored and goalkeeper Maxime Lagace stopped all 29 shots he had to take Pittsburgh past Buffalo as both teams finished the regular season.

A few hours later, Pittsburgh took the East Division and home advantage in the first round of the playoffs. The Penguins secured first place after their victory and the Washington Capitals could not record a regular-time win against the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Sabers finished last not only in the East, but also overall in the NHL. Buffalo rookie goalie Michael Houser, pushed into number 1 due to a series of injuries, made 22 saves on his fourth career start.

Panther 5, lightning 1

Alex Wennberg scored three goals to take Florida past Tampa Bay in Sunrise, Florida and take a two-point lead over the Lightning in the race for home advantage in the playoffs of the Stanley Cup first-round playoffs.

The two teams finish the regular season on Monday. Florida needs a point to win the home ice. Tampa Bay needs a regulatory victory. Sam Bennett and Jonathan Huberdeau also scored a goal for Florida, adding an assist each. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 28 shots.

The teams collected a total of 156 minutes of penalty time and nine penalties for misconduct. Luke Schenn scored for the Blitz and Andrei Vasilevskiy lost with 30 saves.

Capitals 2, Flyer 1 (OT)

Conor Sheary scored 59.4 seconds in extra time when Washington defeated the Philadelphia visit.

Lars Eller scored 40 seconds ahead to force overtime. When the game was won, Sheary took a short pass from Nic Dowd and shot a shot between the pads of goalkeeper Alex Lyon.

The low-injury capitals were still understaffed in this competition. TJ Oshie appeared to hurt his knee late in the second period and was disqualified with a lower body injury leaving Washington only 10 strikers in the third period and overtime.

Rangers 5, Bruins 4

Mika Zibanejad, Alexis Lafreniere and Vitali Kravtsov scored four goals in a third period in less than five minutes, and New York ended their season with a win in Boston.

Zibanejad scored again late, K’Andre Miller also scored and Pavel Buchnevich had three assists as the Rangers suffered a streak of five defeats. Keith Kinkaid had 28 saves before dropping out with an injury in the third. Igor Shesterkin stopped seven shots the rest of the way to New York.

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

Islanders 5, Devils 1

Brock Nelson scored two goals in 3:40 in the second half when New York scored four unanswered goals in the final regular season game at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY when visiting New Jersey

Jordan Eberle scored late in the first half and Nelson struck twice, taking two rebounds after New Jersey’s Andreas Johnsson ended the game in less than five minutes. Former devil Kyle Palmieri and Mathew Barzal scored within 37 seconds at the start of day three when the islanders halted a three-game losing streak.

The islanders were within two points of the third-placed Bruins. The Islanders visit Boston on Monday night for their final regular season game, but the Bruins also visit the capital cities on Tuesday night.

Senators 4, Jets 2

Tim Stutzle scored his first career hat trick to help Ottawa beat Winnipeg and gave the Jets their sixth straight home defeat.

Connor Brown also scored and added two assists, Shane Pinto collected two assists and Filip Gustavsson made 27 saves for the Senators. Long out of playoff competition, Ottawa is in an 8-1-1 run.

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

Blue Jackets 5, Red Wings 4 (OT)

Max Domi scored 20.4 seconds in extra time and Columbus won his season finale against Detroit.

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

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

Wild 4, Ducks 3 (OT)

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

Jared Spurgeon, Ryan Hartman and Nick Bonino also scored one goal, and Cam Talbot scored 19 saves for the Wild, who ended 7-1 against the Ducks that season. Kirill Kaprizov had two assists in his 13th multipoint game which contributed to his franchise rookie records.

Rickard Rakell and Max Comtois each had a goal and a template for the ducks. Ryan Miller made 21 saves in the last game of his 18-year NHL career.

– Field level media

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