Mika Zibanejad scored 40 goals in the NHL for the first time and the New York Rangers kept pace in the Eastern Conference wild-card race with a 4-2 win against the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center on Tuesday.
The center became the fifth player this season to reach the milestone when he scored at 10:12 of the first period to join Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin, Boston Bruins forward David Pastrnak, Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews and Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl.
It was also Zibanejad's 10th goal in March, the third time he has scored at least 10 in one month this season (10 in December and 11 in February). Two active NHL players have accomplished the feat in four months during a season: Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos in 2011-12 and Ovechkin for the Capitals in 2007-08.
The 2019-20 season is the second in NHL history with the first five players to score 40 goals from a different country. Teemu Selanne (Finland), Eric Lindros (Canada), Alexei Yashin (Russia), Tony Amonte (United States) and Jaromir Jagr (Czechoslovakia, now Czech Republic) did it in 1998-99.
Forward Pavel Buchnevich had an assist on Zibanejad's goal to extend his point streak to six games (eight points; one goal, seven assists) for the Rangers (37-28-4), who have won two of their past three games and remain three points behind the Carolina Hurricanes and Columbus Blue Jackets for the first wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the East with one game in hand on the Blue Jackets.
The Rangers have 13 games remaining, beginning at the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, ALT, MSG+, NHL.TV). Six are against Metropolitan Division teams and one is against the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center on March 30. New York and Florida (35-26-8) are tied with 79 points; the Panthers have two fewer wins.
The Stars (37-24-8) are winless in six games (0-4-2), eight points behind the second-place Avalanche in the Central Division and four ahead of the Nashville Predators and Winnipeg Jets.
Bruins earn 100th point, end Flyers' winning streak at nine
The Boston Bruins became the first team to reach 100 points this season with a 2-0 win against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center.
Goalie Tuukka Rask made 36 saves for his 50th NHL shutout on his 33rd birthday and forward Brad Marchand had one assist to extend the longest active point streak in the NHL to 13 games (18 points; five goals, 13 assists). The Bruins (44-14-12) are 5-1-0 in their past six games and eight points ahead of the second-place Lightning in the Atlantic Division.
Boston earned 100 points for the third consecutive season and in 70 games or fewer for the seventh time in its history. The Bruins are also the first to 100 for the sixth time (1989-90, 1982-83, 1973-74, 1971-72 and 1970-71), two behind the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings (eight each) for most in NHL history including ties and outright.
Marchand's 13-game run ties the longest of his NHL career set from Oct. 5-Nov. 4 and is tied for the fourth-longest in 2019-20 behind Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (17 games), Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane (15) and Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho (14).
The Flyers (41-21-7) remained one point behind the first-place Capitals in the Metropolitan Division after their winning streak ended at nine games, their longest run since 10 in a row from Nov. 27-Dec. 14, 2016.
Penguins win 40 games for seventh consecutive time
The Pittsburgh Penguins (40-23-6) won 40 games for the seventh straight season and moved within three points of the Flyers for second in the Metropolitan with a 5-2 victory against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. The Penguins previously achieved the mark in six consecutive seasons from 2006-07 to 2011-12. Their current run is tied for the longest active among NHL teams, joining the Bruins, Lightning and St. Louis Blues. Pittsburgh's 13 40-win seasons since 2005-06 are tied with the San Jose Sharks for most during that span.
Matthews gains in goal-scoring race, Maple Leafs pad third place standing
Matthews scored his 47th goal and the Toronto Maple Leafs lengthened their lead for third place in the Atlantic Division with a 2-1 win against the Lightning at Scotiabank Arena.
Matthews is one behind Ovechkin and Pastrnak (48 each) in the NHL goal-scoring race. His 32nd goal on home ice passed Dave Andreychuk (31 in 1993-94) for second-most in a season in Maple Leafs history. Darryl Sittler (34 in 1977-78) is the only skater with more.
The Maple Leafs (36-25-9) moved three points ahead of the Panthers.