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Steve Mason makes 33 saves for franchise record 10th shutout

NHL.com @NHL

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Steve Mason made 16 of his 33 saves in the third period for his franchise record 10th shutout as the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Calgary Flames 5-0 on Thursday night in a possible first-round playoff preview.

Mason, who broke the mark set last season by Pascal Leclaire, leads the NHL in shutouts and has the most for a rookie since Tony Esposito had 15 for the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1969-70 season.

Jason Williams had two power-play goals, Rick Nash had a career-high four assists, and Kristian Huselius also had four assists in the penalty-filled game.

The teams combined for 124 minutes, 64 by Columbus, with 110 coming in the second period when there were two fights, two game misconducts and four misconducts.

Manny Malhotra and Williams had goals in the first period, and Raffi Torres and R.J. Umberger gave Columbus a 4-0 lead in the second.

Calgary, the third-place team in the Western Conference, has dropped two straight. The sixth-place Blue Jackets are 7-1-1 in their past nine as they try to qualify for their first playoff appearance.

After failing to score through two periods of their previous two games, the Blue Jackets took an early lead when Nash set up Malhotra at 3:43 by breaking down the right side and cutting sharply in the middle of the right circle.

That drew the attention of goalie Miikka Kiprusoff, and Nash feathered a backdoor pass to Malhotra for the easy redirect into the open net.

Columbus scored a power-play goal at 12:29 with Williams taking a centring pass in the high slot from Huselius and using Malhotra's screen in front. Williams' shot went through the pads and trickled across the line as Kiprusoff reached back.

Notes: Calgary RW Todd Bertuzzi returned after missing 10 games with a knee injury. He fought Columbus D Rostislav Klesla in the second period. ... Blue Jackets LW Fredrik Modin (knee) has missed nine straight games and 17 of 18. ... The teams split four games this season with the home team winning every one.

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