MALKIN POWERS PENGUINS IN MILESTONE GAME
Evgeni Malkin notched 2-1-3 while playing in his 700th NHL game and Mark Streit (1-1-2), who was acquired in a trade from the Tampa Bay Lightning on Wednesday, scored the game-winning goal in his debut with the Pittsburgh Penguins, who are 19-2-2 in their past 23 home games.
* At 39-16-8 (86 points), the Penguins pulled even in points with the Columbus Blue Jackets (40-16-6, 86 points) for second place in the Metropolitan Division. Columbus has played one fewer game.
* Malkin, who also has reached milestones for career goals, assists and points this season (323-502-825), had his fifth three-point game of 2016-17 and the 74th such performance of his 11-season NHL career, all of which has been spent with the Penguins.
* Malkin ranks second on the Penguins with 28 goals, matching his highest total since 2011-12 when he scored a career-high 50 en route to winning his second Art Ross Trophy as the League's top point-getter (50-59-109 in 75 GP).
Video: NHL Tonight: Penguins' defensive improvements
PITTSBURGH 5, Tampa Bay 2
Arizona 4, CAROLINA 2
WINNIPEG 3, St. Louis 0
CHICAGO 2, NY Islanders 1 (SO)
CALGARY 3, Detroit 2 (OT)
ANAHEIM 5, Toronto 2
CLUBS EARN CRUCIAL WINS IN WESTERN PLAYOFF RACE
The Chicago Blackhawks (41-18-5, 87 points) and Calgary Flames (35-26-4, 74 points) each extended their winning streaks to six games in contests that featured late tying goals, and the Anaheim Ducks (33-21-10, 76 points) won in their return from their bye to keep pace in the Western Conference playoff race:
* Artemi Panarin tied the game with 1:14 remaining in the third period and scored again in the shootout as Chicago rallied for their 11th win in their past 12 games. Panarin reached the 20-goal mark for the second time in as many NHL seasons. The Blackhawks moved within one point of the idle Minnesota Wild (41-15-6, 88 points) for first place in the Western Conference. Minnesota holds two games in hand.
* The Flames yielded a tying goal with 1.8 seconds left in regulation, but Mikael Backlund scored in overtime, his 20th goal of the season, to help Calgary improve to 11-2-1 in its past 14 games. The Flames, who also went 6-0-0 from Nov. 30 - Dec. 10, 2016, have multiple win streaks of at least six games in the same season for the first time since 2006-07.
* Rickard Rakell (2-0-2) scored twice, including the eventual game-winning goal 16 seconds after Jakob Silfverberg (1-0-1) tied the score, to help the Ducks to their third straight home win. Jonathan Bernier made 37 saves to earn the victory against his former club. The Ducks moved past the idle Edmonton Oilers (34-22-8, 76 points) into second place in the Pacific Division, where seeds No. 2-4 are separated by two points.
Video: TOR@ANA: Ducks score 16 seconds apart to take lead
Connor Hellebuyck (29 saves) had his fourth shutout of the season to move within one of tying the single-season Jets/Thrashers franchise record and lift Winnipeg within four points of a playoff spot. … Matt Murray (27 saves) earned his 24th win of 2016-17 to tie Gary Inness (24-18-10 in 1974-75) for the most wins in a season by a Penguins rookie goaltender. … Lightning forward Adam Erne , a second-round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft, scored his first career goal (7 GP). … Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews scored the deciding goal in the shootout while playing in his 700th game. … Mathieu Perreault (3-7-10 in 6 GP), Dustin Byfuglien (2-4-6 in 6 GP) and Nikita Kucherov (7-6-13 in 5 GP) each extended point streaks. … The Panthers welcomed the Stanley Cup for Day 2 of the NHL Centennial Fan Arena's three-day stop in South Florida. … Alex Ovechkin delivered pizza to unsuspecting Washington Capitals fans as part of a charity benefit.
SNEAK PEEK AT SATURDAY'S ACTION
All Times Eastern
Colorado @ Winnipeg, 7 p.m., SN, ALT2
New Jersey @ Boston, 7 p.m., NESN, MSG+
Montreal @ NY Rangers, 7 p.m., NHLN, CBC, TVA Sports, MSG
Tampa Bay @ Buffalo, 7 p.m., MSG-B, SUN
Dallas @ Florida, 7 p.m., FS-F, FS-SW
Columbus @ Ottawa, 7 p.m., CITY, FS-O
Philadelphia @ Washington, 7:30 p.m., CSN-DC, CSN-PH
Chicago @ Nashville, 8 p.m., FS-TN, CSN-CH
Vancouver @ Los Angeles, 10 p.m., SN, FS-W
Detroit @ Edmonton, 10 p.m., CBC, FS-D
DIVISIONAL RACES SPOTLIGHT HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA SCHEDULE
Five of the 10 games on Saturday's schedule will be part of the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast, highlighted by two key matchups in the Eastern Conference playoff picture: The Atlantic Division-leading Montreal Canadiens (36-21-8, 80 points) aim for a fifth straight win when they visit the New York Rangers (41-21-2, 84 points), who hold the first wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the East and are two points out of second place in the Metropolitan Division. The Blue Jackets (40-16-6, 86 points), who occupy the No. 2 seed and have two games in hand on New York, visit the Ottawa Senators (34-22-6, 74 points), who begin the night six points in back of Montreal with three games in hand. In the other three contests, the Colorado Avalanche (17-42-3, 37 points) visit the Winnipeg Jets; the Vancouver Canucks (26-30-7, 59 points) face off with the Los Angeles Kings (31-27-6, 68 points); and the Detroit Red Wings (25-26-11, 61 points) visit the Edmonton Oilers (34-22-8, 76 points).
CAPITALS LOOK TO EXTEND STREAKS AT VERIZON CENTER
After establishing franchise-records streaks for home wins (14) and point streak (15-0-1) in their previous game, the League-leading Capitals (43-13-7, 93 points) continue their pursuit of a second straight Presidents' Trophy when they welcome the Philadelphia Flyers (30-26-7, 67 points). Philadelphia is four points behind the Islanders (30-22-11, 71 points) for the second wild card in the Eastern Conference.