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The Buzzer: Grubauer’s heroics; Monahan gets back on the board

Philipp grubauer, nick cousins

Colorado Avalanche goaltender Philipp Grubauer, left, stops a shot by Arizona Coyotes center Nick Cousins during the shootout of an NHL hockey game Friday, March 29, 2019, in Denver. The Avalanche won 3-2. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)


Three stars

1. Philipp Grubauer, Colorado Avalanche


If you’re a fan of the Avalanche, you chanted that 42 times on Friday (and three more in the shootout) as the Avalanche came through with a massive 3-2 win in the lottery rounds.

Grubauer was tremendous, stopping three shots in overtime and all three shooters in the shootout to pick up a what could be a crucial two points in a tight wildcard race in the Western Conference.

2. Sean Monahan, Calgary Flames

Calgary’s top line hasn’t been churning out points in the same way we’re all used to.

Monahan came into the game held off the scoresheet in his previous five games but found two goals and two assists in a four-point performance. That line is going to need to fire on all 12 cylinders to grant the Flames playoff success. Friday’s results will be encouraging.

3. Pekka Rinne, Nashville Predators

The Predators owe Rinne a nice, fancy meal. P.K. Subban can find him the nicest bottle of win in the place.

Rinne made 42 saves in a 3-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Rinne should have gotten the shutout if not for a lapse by Subban and Co. who were caught sleeping as Nick Bjugstad walked out from behind the net unimpeded and scored with 63 seconds left in the game.

We’ll let the blame get sorted out in-house, but Rinne’s solid performance put the Predators level with the Winnipeg Jets on 94 points in the Central Division. Winnipeg owns the tie-breaker at this point, and has a game in hand, but Nashville is right there in case the Jets slip again.

Highlights of the night


Filthy stuff here:

Desperate Dubnyk:


St. Louis clinched a playoff berth on Friday, an incredible feat:

Vegas, in their second every NHL season, clinched for the second time:


Rangers 4, Blues 2
Predators 3, Penguins 1
Red Wings 4, Devils 0
Avalanche 3, Coyotes 2 (SO)
Flames 6, Ducks 1
Wild 3, Golden Knights 2

Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck