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PITTSBURGH (AP) -Steven Stamkos scored his 46th goal to edge within one of NHL leader Sidney Crosby and the Tampa Bay Lightning prevented Pittsburgh from gaining ground in the Eastern Conference race, beating the Penguins 2-0 on Wednesday night.

Crosby and the Penguins couldn't find the net on a 5-minute power play in the first period resulting from just-recalled defenseman Matt Lashoff's boarding penalty and went on to lose their fourth in six games after winning their previous two.

Pittsburgh missed an opportunity to take a three-point lead in the Atlantic Division over idle New Jersey. The Lightning had lost 14 of their previous 18 overall and were coming off a 3-2 loss in Columbus on Tuesday night.

Lightning goalie Mike Smith made 27 saves for his second shutout of the season.

Steve Downie also scored for Tampa Bay.

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Jason Pominville scored his team-leading 24th goal to help Buffalo inch closer to clinching the Northeast Division title.

Raffi Torres had three assists in his first game back after missing six because of a hand injury, and Ryan Miller made 13 saves for his 39th victory - one short of matching a career high. The injury-depleted Sabres also got production from their role players as defenseman Henrik Tallinder, fourth-liner Adam Mair and rookies Tim Kennedy, Nathan Gerbe and Tyler Ennis also scored.

Buffalo won for the seventh time in eight games to move seven points ahead of second-place Ottawa in the division with 11 days left in the regular season.

Michael Frolik and Jeff Taffe scored for Florida, which is all but mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.

MONTREAL (AP) - Eric Staal scored the go-ahead goal at 2:55 of third period and Cam Ward made 34 saves for Carolina.

Brandon Sutter also scored for the Hurricanes. Carolina, which has won three of four, is 11th in the Eastern Conference with 75 points, seven behind Montreal.

Marc-Andre Bergeron scored for Montreal.

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