Home Team in Caps
BOSTON 3, Florida 1
BUFFALO 2, Los Angeles 1 (OT)
MONTREAL 3, Ottawa 1
Washington 2, TAMPA BAY 1
NY Islanders 3, COLUMBUS 2 (OT)
ST. LOUIS 3, Dallas 0
Colorado 3, NASHVILLE 2
Carolina 5, ARIZONA 4 (OT)
CALGARY 5, NY Rangers 4 (OT)
Minnesota 2, SAN JOSE 0
GAUDREAU (AGAIN) HELPS SCORCHING FLAMES EXTEND STREAK
Johnny Gaudreau (2-1—3) assisted on TJ Brodie's overtime goal to help the Calgary Flames escape a late push from the New York Rangers -- New York erased a 4-1 deficit with the tying goal at 18:48 of the third period – and extend their home winning streak to nine games, one shy of the franchise record established from Nov. 7 – Dec. 12, 2006 (10-0-0).
* The Flames have won five straight games (all at Scotiabank Saddledome). Via Elias, the Flames are the second team to sweep a homestand of at least five games this season, joining their provincial rivals. The Edmonton Oilers also accomplished the feat with a win against the Rangers on Friday (5-0-0).
* The Flames are the second team to win nine consecutive home games this season, joining the Rangers, who accomplished the feat from Oct. 19 – Nov. 23 (9-0-0).
* Gaudreau had seven goals and 10 points during the Flames' five-game homestand, including three multi-point efforts. Gaudreau's assist in overtime marked the fourth time in the past five games that he factored on the clinching goal. He also scored the game-deciding goal in the shootout on Dec. 1 against the Dallas Stars, and had the game-winning goal on Dec. 4 against the Boston Bruins (in OT) and Dec. 10 against the Buffalo Sabres.
* Gaudreau has 10 goals and 24 points on home ice this season, tied for second in the NHL behind Patrick Kane (11-15—26). He leads the Flames and ranks seventh in the League with 31 points (12 goals, 19 points).
* Brodie scored his third career overtime goal to extend his point streak to six games (1-6—7), equaling a career high established from Oct. 9-19, 2014 (3-4—7).
TOP EASTERN CONFERENCE CLUBS EARN WINS
The Montreal Canadiens and Washington Capitals, the top two teams in the Eastern Conference, each earned their 20th victory of the season:
* The Canadiens jumped to a 3-0 lead and Dustin Tokarski made 25 saves to backstop Montreal to its first win in five games (1-4-0). The Canadiens are 8-1-3 in their past 12 home games against the Ottawa Senators since Dec. 7, 2010 (OTT: 4-5-3).
* At 20-8-3 (43 points), the Canadiens maintained a one-point lead over the Capitals for first place in the conference and also pulled within three points of the Dallas Stars (22-6-2, 46 points), who lost in regulation, for top spot in the League standings.
* Tokarski, who was 2-3-3 in eight appearances with the St. John's IceCaps (AHL) this season, earned his first NHL win since March 17 at the Florida Panthers. He's 10-10-1 in 30 career appearances with the Canadiens and Tampa Bay Lightning.
* Max Pacioretty scored his team-leading 14th goal and fourth decisive goal of the season. He leads the League with 25 game-winning goals since 2013-14.
* The Canadiens outshot the Senators 42-26, including 27-8 in the first period. The 27 shots in the first tied the Canadiens record for most shots in any period, established Jan. 20, 1973 against the Philadelphia Flyers (first period) and matched on Feb. 5, 1977 at the Los Angeles Kings (second period). Via Elias, it also was the highest shot total by one team in the first period of a game since March 12, 2009 (DET: 28 shots vs. CGY).
* Braden Holtby made 35 saves, including a standing toe stop less 60 seconds after the opening face-off, to stretch his career-high personal point streak to 11 games (10-0-1, 1.79 GAA, .939 SV%, 1 SO) and help the Capitals improve to 9-1-1 in their past 11 games with the Lightning (TBL: 2-7-2).
* At 20-6-2 (42 points), the Capitals continued their best start to a season in their 41-year history. They hold a two-point lead over the Rangers (18-9-4, 40 points), who lost in overtime, for first place in the Metropolitan Division.
* Via Elias, Holtby's 11-game point streak is the longest by a goaltender this season. He is the first Capitals goalie to earn a point streak in 11 or more consecutive decisions in a season since Jose Theodore (Jan. 13 – March 24, 2010: 17-0-2). Holtby also leads the League with 18 wins and a 1.90 goals-against average.
* Evgeny Kuznetsov scored the eventual game-winning goal (his third of the season) midway through the second period. He leads the Capitals with 28 points (nine goals, 19 assists).
HURRICANES OVERCOME COYOTES' RALLY FOR OVERTIME WIN
The Arizona Coyotes scored the tying goal with 15.7 seconds left in the third period to erase a 4-1 third-period deficit, but Victor Rask (1-1—2) scored 53 seconds into overtime to lift the Carolina Hurricanes to a 4-1-0 record in their past five games.
* Rask scored his fourth career game-winning goal and second in overtime (also Oct. 21 at the Colorado Avalanche). He ranks second on the Hurricanes with 22 points (nine goals, 13 assists) in 30 games, including a goal and seven points in his past four.
* Justin Faulk (1-1—2) has four goals and seven points in his past four games, including three straight multi-point games. Via Elias, Faulk is the first Hurricanes/Whalers defenseman to have at least three straight multi-point games since Zarley Zalapski from Nov. 27 – Dec. 3, 1992 (four straight).
* Faulk, who leads all defensemen with 12 goals this season, also leads the League with 12 power-play goals. Elias adds that Faulk (30 GP) tied the Hurricanes/Whalers franchise record for power-play goals in a season by a defenseman, equaling the mark set by Risto Siltanen in 1983-84 (in 75 GP)
* Elias Lindholm (0-3—3) established a career high for assists in a game with his first multi-point game since March 8 against Edmonton (3-2—5).
BACKES LEADS BLUES ON NIGHT WHEN CAPTAINS HONORED
After the Blues honored all 20 players to wear the 'C' for them current captain David Backes (1-1—2) scored the eventual game-winning goal (his third of the season) two minutes into the game to help the Blues halt the Stars' point streak at seven games (5-0-2) and road point streak at nine games (7-0-2).
* Backes, who has a goal in three straight games, has nine goals and 15 points since Oct. 31 (20 GP) compared to two assists in his first 10 games.
* Jake Allen made 26 saves, including 21 in the final two periods, to earn his ninth career shutout and pull into a share of the League lead with four shutouts (tied w/ Devan Dubnyk).
* Vladimir Tarasenko and Ryan Reaves added insurance goals in the third period. Tarasenko, who has scored each of his past nine goals at Scottrade Center, ranks third in the League with 17 goals.
ISLANDERS, WILD KEEP STREAKS ALIVE
The New York Islanders and Minnesota Wild each earned road wins to continue their respective point streaks:
* Kyle Okposo (2-1—3) factored on all three Islanders goals to help them stretch their point streak to nine games, their longest run since April 1-23, 2013 (8-0-3). Okposo picked up his fifth career overtime goal (all with the Islanders), second in Islanders history behind John Tavares (8). During New York's point streak, Okposo has two game-winning goals (also Nov. 25 vs. PHI), two game-deciding goals (Dec. 2 vs. NYR and Dec. 8 at PHI) and one clinching shootout goal (Dec. 4 vs. STL).
* Darcy Kuemper made 25 saves and Zach Parise (1-1—2) factored on both goals to help the Wild extend their point streak to seven games (4-0-3), their longest run since Jan. 20 – Feb. 14, 2014 (8-0-2). Kuemper, who made nine saves in helping the Wild earn a team shutout on Dec. 5 against the Avalanche, earned his sixth career shutout to improve to 2-0-4 in seven appearances this season (2.33 GAA, .920 SV%, 1 SO). The Wild earned their League-leading sixth shutoutof the season (Dubynk: 4 SO; Kuemper: 1 SO; and team: 1 SO).
AROUND THE RINKS
* Tuukka Rask made 26 saves, including 13 in the third period, to extend his personal point streak to eight games (6-0-2, 1.53 GAA, .948 SV%, 2 SO) and help the Boston Bruins improve to 8-1-2 in their past 11 games. Rask also moved to 14-2-1 in 17 career appearances against the Panthers (1.28 GAA, .955 SV%, 3 SO). The Bruins are 18-3-1 in their past 22 games against the Panthers since Nov. 18, 2010 (FLA: 4-15-3), including eight consecutive victories at TD Garden.
* Ryan O'Reilly (1-1—2) scored his 100th career goal – on a desperation shot for his sixth career overtime goal – to lift the Buffalo Sabres to their third consecutive victory at First Niagara Center and halt the Kings' winning streak at six games. O'Reilly, who extended his point streak to seven games (3-7—10), leads the Sabres with 27 points (10 goals, 17 assists) in 30 games. The Sabres also earned their seventh straight home win in their head-to-head series with the Kings and are 13-1-1 in their past 15 games against L.A. since Dec. 17, 1993 (LAK: 1-11-3).
* Andreas Martinsen broke a 2-2 deadlock at 9:36 of the third period to help the Avalanche move to 4-2-0 in its past six games. Via Elias, Martinsen (Baerum, Norway) is the fourth Norwegian-born player in NHL history to score a game-winning goal. The others: Mats Zuccarello, Espen Knutsen and Patrick Thoresen.
MILESTONES & BENCHMARKS
* Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson (600) and Lightning forward Brian Boyle (500) each played in milestone games.
* Goaltender Semyon Varlamov (34 SV) appeared in his 226th career game with the Avalanche to surpass Dan Bouchard (225 GP) for third place on the franchise's all-time games played list.
Despite an overtime loss, the Kings extended their point streak to nine games (7-0-2) . . . The Coyotes overcame a 4-1 third-period deficit to extend their home point streak to six games (5-0-1) . . . Coyotes forwards Anthony Duclair (2-1—3) and Max Domi (0-2—2) each earned multiple points. Domi (10-15—25) ranks second in rookie scoring and Duclair (10-8—18) is fourth . . . Islanders goaltender Jaroslav Halak (28 SV) has earned a point in each of his past seven decisions (5-0-2, 1.55 GAA, .935 SV%) . . . Bruins forward Ryan Spooner (2-0—2) had his third career multi-goal game (also March 10 at OTT and March 19 at OTT) . . . Flames forward Sean Monahan (3-5—8) and Hurricanes forward Andrej Nestrasil (1-5—6) each extended their point streaks to five games . . . Senators forward Jean-Gabriel Pageau has scored eight of his 26 career goals (regular-season and playoffs) against the Canadiens (30.8%) . . . Kings goaltender Jhonas Enroth, a second-round selection (No. 46) by the Sabres in the 2006 NHL Draft, made 28 saves in his return to Buffalo . . . The Penguins announced changes to their coaching staff, including the appointment of Mike Sullivan as coach . . . Linesman Steve Miller worked his 1,000th NHL game in LAK/BUF . . . The Predators officially opened the ice rink at Bridgestone Winter Park, which will be in operation through NHL All-Star Weekend.