Home Team in Caps
Ottawa 3, NY RANGERS 0
Carolina 3, PHILADELPHIA 1
MONTREAL 4, Detroit (OT)
TAMPA BAY 4, New Jersey 3 (OT)
FLORIDA 4, Boston 2
ST. LOUIS 2, Chicago 1
Minnesota 4, NASHVILLE 2
COLORADO 1, Winnipeg 0 (SO)
CALGARY 3, Los Angeles 1
San Jose 3, EDMONTON 1
VANCOUVER 5, Arizona 0
WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYOFF FIELD IS SET
All eight playoff berths in the Western Conference have been claimed, though only one matchup is confirmed (VAN vs. CGY). The current matchups are:
FLAMES CLINCH PLAYOFF BERTH, WILL FACE CANUCKS IN FIRST ROUND . . .
Jiri Hudler tallied three points, including the game-winning and insurance goals, to power the Flames to their third straight win, helping clinch their 27th playoff berth in franchise history and first since 2008-09.
* The Flames (45-29-7, 97 points) will face the Canucks (47-29-5, 99 points) in the First Round. Vancouver currently holds home-ice advantage and the teams are equal in the ROW tiebreaker. However, Calgary won the season series 2-1-1 (VAN: 2-2-0). The Flames play their final regular-season game Saturday afternoon at home against the Jets (3:00 p.m. ET, SNW, TSN3), while the Canucks host the Oilers for their final game (10:00 p.m. ET, CBC).
* The clubs will meet in the playoffs for the seventh time. They last met in the opening round of the 2004 Stanley Cup Playoffs when Calgary's Martin Gelinas scored in overtime of Game 7 en route to the club's third Stanley Cup Final.
* Hudler (31-45-76) reached the 30-goal milestone for the first time in his career. Sean Monahan (31-31-62) also has 30 goals this season, marking the first time multiple Flames players have reached 30 in the same season since 2008-09 (Mike Cammalleri: 39, Jarome Iginla: 35).
* Johnny Gaudreau (24-40-64) tallied 1-1-2 to open a two-point lead against Filip Forsberg (25-37-62) and Mark Stone (24-38-62) for the rookie scoring title. He also tied Tom Lysiak (1973-74: 19-45-64) for the fifth-most points by a rookie with the Flames.
* Monahan extended his point streak to six games (2-4—6), while Dennis Wideman added two assists to move into fourth place in scoring among defensemen.
. . . CANUCKS CRUISE PAST COYOTES, EYE HOME-ICE ADVANTAGE
Yannick Weber scored twice and Eddie Lack stopped all 28 shots he faced to guide the Canucks to their fourth victory in their past six outings and to a 3-1-1 record against the Coyotes in 2014-15.
* The Canucks (47-29-5, 99 points) remain the No. 2 seed in the Pacific Division and will face the Flames (45-29-7, 97 points) in the First Round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Home-ice advantage will be determined Saturday, but the clubs are guaranteed to meet in the postseason for the seventh time.
* Lack posted his sixth career shutout and second this season (Dec. 4 at PIT). Making his 41st appearance of the season (82nd of his career), Lack earned his first victory in four career meetings with the Coyotes (1-2-1, 0.99 GAA, .966 SV%).
* Weber tallied his 10th and 11th goals of the season (64 GP) for his first career multi-goal effort; he had 11 goals in his first 164 career contests. Alexander Edler matched a career-high with three assists (Feb. 7, 2009 vs. CHI: 1-3-4).
* Daniel Sedin (1-1-2) and Henrik Sedin (0-2-2) also registered multiple points. Henrik (18-53-71) reached the 70-point milestone for the eighth time in his career; his brother leads the team with 19-55-74.
BLUES WRAP UP CENTRAL DIVISION TITLE
Paul Stastny scored the game-winning goal in the third period to guide the Blues past the Blackhawks for their fourth win in their past five games and ninth division title in franchise history.
* The Blues (50-24-7, 107 points) locked up their first Central Division title since 2011-12 and also tied the idle Ducks (50-24-7, 107 points) – in terms of points – for top spot in the Western Conference. However, Anaheim owns the ROW tiebreaker (ANA: 42, STL: 41):
* The Blues reached the 50-win plateau for the second straight season (2013-14: 52-23-7, 111 points) and for the third time in franchise history (also 1999-00: 51-19-12, 114 points).
* Jake Allen made 21 saves and allowed only one goal for the fourth straight game. He improved to 22-6-4 this season (2.28 GAA, .913 SV%), including a 12-4-1 record at Scottrade Center (2.14 GAA, .908 SV%).
* Stastny scored his career-high and team-leading seventh game-winning goal of the season. Dmitrij Jaskin also scored, on the power play.
* The Blues closed their season series with the Blackhawks with a 3-2-0 record (CHI: 2-3-0).
WILD MATCH NHL ROAD RECORD IN NASHVILLE
The Wild scored four answered goals -- including two in the final 2:03 of the third period -- to erase an early 2-0 Predators lead and pick up their 12th consecutive road victory, matching a NHL record set by the Red Wings in 2005-06.
* The Wild (46-27-8, 100 points) improved to 26-7-2 since the All-Star Break to reach 100 points for the second time in franchise history (2006-07: 48-26-8, 104 points). They currently occupy the first Wild Card spot, but can leapfrog the Blackhawks (48-27-6, 102 points) for third place in the Central Division.
* Jason Zucker (2-0-2) and Marco Scandella scored 31 seconds apart late in the second period to tie the game. Zucker (21-5-26) hit the 20-goal milestone for the first time, despite playing in only 50 games this season.
* Jason Pominville scored his 30th career game-winning goal. Mikko Koivu tallied one assist to become the first player in Wild history to reach 500 career points (144-356-500).
* Making his first appearance since Jan. 20, Darcy Kuemper made 32 saves to improve to 14-12-2 in 30 games this season. He has earned points in four of his past five outings (2-1-2), posting a 2.64 goals-against average and .915 save percentage in that span.
* The Wild have allowed no more than two goals in all 12 games on their current road winning streak. Elias says the only team in the last 80 years with a longer such stretch in a single season was the Stars in 1998-99 (18 straight).
SENATORS CLIMB BACK INTO FIRST WILD CARD SPOT
Andrew Hammond stopped all 26 shots he faced, including 12 in the third period, to record his third career shutout and guide the Senators to a 20-3-3 record since Feb. 18, including a 5-0-1 record in their past six contests.
* The victory propelled the Senators (42-26-13, 97 points) past the idle Penguins (42-26-12, 96 points) and Bruins (41-27-13, 95 points), which lost Thursday night, into the first Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.
* The Senators also moved within one point of the Red Wings (42-25-14, 98 points), which lost in overtime, for third place in the Atlantic Division. Detroit, however, owns the ROW tiebreaker (DET: 38, OTT: 36).
* Hammond improved to 19-1-2 with a 1.82 goals-against average and .939 save percentage in 23 appearances.
* Clarke MacArthur (3-5-8) and Kyle Turris (2-6-8) each tallied 1-1-2, including goals 64 second apart in the second period, to extend point streaks to six and five games, respectively. Jean-Gabriel Pageau also scored into the empty net.
* Mark Stone notched one assist to extend his point-streak to eight games (6-5-11), the longest point streak by a rookie in franchise history. The last rookie with a point streak of at least eight games for any team was Nathan MacKinnon (Jan. 25-March 6, 13 GP). Stone (24-38-62) is tied for second in rookie scoring, two points behind Calgary’s Gaudreau (24-40-64).
* The Senators have earned points in nine straight regular-season visits to Madison Square Garden since Jan. 14, 2010 (8-0-1). They are 26-13-2 in 41 all-time road contests against the Rangers.
BATTLE FOR ATLANTIC TO BE DECIDED ON FINAL DAY
The Canadiens (49-22-10, 108 points) and Lightning (49-24-8, 106 points) each earned overtime victories Thursday to delay the crowning of an Atlantic Division champion until the final day of the regular season. Montreal holds a two-point lead but Tampa Bay owns the ROW tiebreaker (TBL: 47, MTL: 43).
* Tomas Plekanec tied the game at 11:39 of the third period and Lars Eller scored at 1:21 of overtime to lift the Canadiens to their second straight win and a sweep of their four-game season series with the Red Wings.
* Carey Price made 24 saves to record his 43rd win of the season, establishing a single-season franchise record. The previous high of 42 wins was set by Jacques Plante in 1955-56 and matched in 1961-62 (Plante) and 1975-76 (Ken Dryden).
* Price will finish the season as the League’s wins leader. He also leads the NHL in goals-against average (1.95), save percentage (.934) and shutouts (9, tied w/ Braden Holtby and Marc-Andre Fleury).
* Eller scored his first career overtime goal and seventh game-winner of the season (76 GP); he had eight game-winning goals in his first 286 GP. Jeff Petry tallied 1-1-2, including an assist on Eller’s goal, to stretch his point streak to six games (3-4-7). Andrei Markov posted the other Montreal tally.
* Tyler Johnson compiled 2-1-3, including the game-winning goal at 1:22 of overtime, to power the Lightning to their third straight game with a point (2-0-1) and first win against the Devils this season (1-1-1). It was his second career overtime goal (March 10 at MTL) and sixth winner this season, tied for the team lead (w/ Steven Stamkos).
* Stamkos scored his 43rd goal of the season to move into second in the NHL. Stamkos (43-29-72) is tied with Johnson (29-43—72) for the team scoring lead and sits two points shy of 500 in his NHL career (276-222—498 in 491 GP).
* Ondrej Palat and Nikita Kucherov each registered three assists. Palat paces the club with 47 assists this season, while Kucherov (28-36-64) ranks third in team scoring. Nikita Nesterov scored the other Lightning goal.
* Ben Bishop made 21 saves to improve to 26-6-1 at Amalie Arena this season (2.16 GAA, .924 SV%, 2 SO). The Lightning lead the NHL with 31 home wins and 63 home points, both franchise records.
RED WINGS, JETS CLINCH PLAYOFF BERTHS DESPITE LOSSES . . .
The Red Wings (42-25-14, 98 points) and Jets (42-26-13, 97 points) each clinched playoff berths despite recording overtime and shootout losses, respectively.
* The Red Wings clinched their 24th consecutive playoff berth and 63rd in franchise history. Their 24 consecutive postseason appearances is the longest active postseason streak among the four North American professional sports leagues. It also matches the fourth-longest run in NHL history:
MOST CONSECUTIVE PLAYOFF APPEARANCES, NHL HISTORY
29 – Boston Bruins (1967-68 to 1995-96),
28 – Chicago Blackhawks (1969-70 to 1996-97)
25 – St. Louis Blues (1979-80 to 2003-04)
24 – Montreal Canadiens (1970-71 to 1993-94) and Detroit Red Wings (1990-91 to present)
* The Jets clinched their first playoff berth since moving to Winnipeg. They also matched a club record for points in one season, established as the Atlanta Thrashers in 2006-07 (43-28-11, 97 points), the only other time the club advanced to the postseason.
. . . IDLE ISLANDERS ALSO CLINCH
By virtue of the Bruins’ loss, the idle Islanders (46-28-6, 98 points) clinched the 23rd playoff berth in franchise history and second in the past three seasons.
AROUND THE RINKS
Highlights from the rest of action on Thursday:
* Jaromir Jagr tallied 0-2-2 and Roberto Luongo made 34 saves to guide the Panthers to their first regulation win against the Bruins since March 15, 2012 (6-2 W at FLA). Jagr (721-1,079—1,800) surpassed Ron Francis (549-1,249-1,798) for sole possession of fourth on the NHL’s all-time points list and tied Adam Oates (1,079 assists) for sixth place in career assists. The only other players in NHL history with at least 1,800 career points are Wayne Gretzky (2,857), Mark Messier (1,887) and Gordie Howe (1,850). Jagr also played in his 1,549th game, tying Alex Delvecchio for 11th place. Luongo earned his 401st career victory to tie Chris Osgood for 10th place in NHL history.
* Down 1-0 after 40 minutes, the Sharks scored three unanswered goals in the third period to rally past the Oilers and halt a two-game skid. Bryan Lerg, a 29-year-old undrafted free-agent from Livonia, Mich., scored his first career goal in his NHL debut, with his family in the stands, to break a 1-1 tie with 2:52 left in regulation. Patrick Marleau and Matt Nieto provided the other goals for the Sharks, who registered 19 shots in the first and third periods to finish with a 52-27 shot advantage. Logan Couture hit the 40-assist plateau for the first time and Chris Tierney extended his point streak to five games (2-4-6).
* Cam Ward made 27 saves and Ryan Murphy notched his first career game-winning goal to help the Hurricanes earn their fourth straight win against the Flyers and finish their season series at 4-1-0 (PHI: 1-3-1). Jordan Staal (1-1-2) and Brett Bellemore supplied the other goals for Carolina, which has won eight of the past nine meetings between the clubs dating to Oct. 6, 2013.
* Reto Berra made 41 saves through overtime, and denied both shootout attempts, as the Avalanche received goals from Ryan O’Reilly and Matt Duchene in the tiebreaker to get past the Jets and earn their second straight win. Berra recorded his first career shutout and improved to 3-1-0 in his past four appearances. His performance was the seventh 41-plus save shutout this season and the third by an Avalanche goaltender. Semyon Varlamov (Jan. 6 at CHI: 54 SV, 2-0 W and March 7 at CBJ: 44 SV, 4-0 W) has the others. O’Reilly notched his sixth career game-deciding goal.
DID YOU KNOW?
Despite suffering a shootout loss, Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec made 21 saves through overtime to earn his third consecutive shutout (also Monday at MIN, 32 SV; and Tuesday at STL, 30 SV). Elias says he is the first goaltender in franchise history to record three straight shutouts. The last goaltender to do that for any team was Brian Elliott with the Blues from April 7-11, 2013.
Despite their shootout loss, the Jets have earned points in nine consecutive visits to Colorado since Dec. 12, 2013 (5-0-4) . . . Oilers goaltender Laurent Brossoit made 49 saves in his NHL debut . . . Oilers forward Curtis Hamilton made his NHL debut . . . Winnipeg’s Paul Maurice became the 14th head coach in NHL history to coach 1,200 regular-season games . . . Rangers defenseman Keith Yandle played in his 83rd game of the season (ARI: 63, NYR: 20) . . . Rangers forward Ryan Bourque, the son of Hockey Hall of Fame defenseman Ray Bourque, made his NHL debut . . . Flyers forward Sean Couturier extended his point streak to five games (2-4-6) . . . Coyotes forward David Moss (500) and Predators defenseman Cody Franson (400) each played in milestone games . . . Boston University and Providence will meet in the Frozen Four championship game Saturday at TD Garden following 5-3 and 4-1 wins against the University of North Dakota and the University of Nebraska-Omaha, respectively . . . NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly presented the Presidents’ Trophy to the Rangers during a pre-game ceremony at Madison Square Garden.