St. Louis Blues

Blues put an end to Blue Jackets' 10-game winning streak

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Blues put an end to Blue Jackets' 10-game winning streak

COLUMBUS, Ohio —The St. Louis Blues got things going early and put an end to the Columbus Blue Jackets' 10-game winning streak with a big victory over their own.

Jake Allen made 33 saves, Alexander Steen scored on St. Louis' first shot of the game, and the Blues beat the Blue Jackets 2-1 on Saturday night.

"It was a huge win for us, especially when Colorado wins this afternoon," Allen said. "Points are crucial right now. Let's just take it one step at a time. And we will figure out the standings at the end."

St. Louis has 89 points - one behind Colorado, which beat Vegas 2-1 in a shootout, and Minnesota, which played Saturday night.

"Approaching every game like the season is on the line," Blues coach Mike Yeo said. "The challenge for us now is to make sure that doesn't change. I am very pleased and very proud of the group. There is an awful lot of character inside our locker room, and I love that it's on full display right now." (See full recap.)

Capitals tighten grip on 1st in Metro
MONTREAL —  Evgeny Kuznetsov and Tom Wilson each scored twice and Nicklas Backstrom had four assists as the Washington Capitals defeated the Montreal Canadiens 6-4 on Saturday night.

Jay Beagle and T.J. Oshie also scored for Washington (44-24-7), which strengthened its grip on first place in the Metropolitan Division. Backstrom posted his 20th career game with at least four points and second this season.

Charles Hudon scored twice for Montreal (27-37-12), which was coming off a 3-0 win at Buffalo on Friday night. Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher each had a goal for the Canadiens, who are 2-8-2 in their last 12 games (see full recap).

Kinkaid saves 35 shots as Devils pick up key win over Lightning 
NEWARK, N.J. — While Taylor Hall and Nico Hischier have been getting much of the credit for New Jersey's surprising playoff push, goaltender Keith Kinkaid has been the one carrying the Devils back to the postseason the past two weeks.

Kinkaid made 35 saves and the Devils took another major step toward making the playoffs for the first time since 2012 with a 2-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night.

Hischier and Kyle Palmieri scored for New Jersey, which has elevated its playoff chances with wins in five of seven games - including outstanding efforts in beating the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins and the Eastern Conference-leading Lightning on consecutive nights.

"Keith has been a difference maker," Devils coach John Hynes said of Kinkaid, who had 75 saves the past two nights. "He has really come in and played well. He has made key saves at key times. He obviously won quite a few games and been a real important factor for us in remaining competitive in the playoff race. We would like to see him continue that at that level, as well." (See full recap.)

Blues finally put a halt to losing skid

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Blues finally put a halt to losing skid

ST. LOUIS -- Carter Hutton made 35 saves, Scottie Upshall and Alex Pietrangelo scored and the St. Louis Blues snapped a seven-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night.

The Blues won for the first time since beating Winnipeg 5-2 on Feb. 9. Hutton improved to 6-2-1 in his last nine starts and 16-7-2 overall, allowing only Andreas Athanasiou's goal with 1:45 left.

Upshall scored for the first time since Dec. 30, beating Jimmy Howard off Colton Parayko's rebound at 1:12 of the second period.

Pietrangelo scored on a blast from the faceoff circle with 5:23 left in the third period. Minutes earlier, Hutton robbed Henrik Zetterberg from close range.

The Blues were outscored 29-10 during the seven-game skid, their longest since they dropped seven in a row from Dec. 26, 2009, to Jan. 7, 2010 (see full recap).

Sabres upset NHL-best Lightning in overtime
TAMPA, Fla. -- Jason Pominville scored on a power play at 1:26 of overtime to give the Buffalo Sabres a 2-1 victory over the NHL-leading Tampa Bay Lightning on Wednesday night.

Pominville beat Andrei Vasilevskiy with a one-timer from the left circle to give the Sabres their second straight victory over the Lightning.

Evan Rodrigues tied it for Buffalo in the third, and Chad Johnson stopped 21 shots.

Cory Conacher scored for Tampa Bay, and Vasilevskiy made 32 saves. With a point in the standings for the overtime loss, the Lightning became the first team to reach 90 points this season.

J.T. Miller, acquired from the New York Rangers on Monday, played 17:40 in his Lightning debut.

With NHL scoring leader Nikita Kucherov out with an undisclosed upper-body injury, the Lightning struggled to generate offensive chances and finished with 17 shots on goal while at even strength (see full recap).

Canadiens win to extend points streak
MONTREAL -- Jonathan Drouin and Nikita Scherbak scored in the second period and the Montreal Canadiens beat the New York Islanders 3-1 on Wednesday night to extend their points streak to five games.

Paul Byron also scored and Antti Niemi made 27 saves to help the Canadiens improve to 2-0-3 in their last five.

Mathew Barzal scored his 18th of the season for the Islanders. They are winless in last four games and 4-8-2 in their last 14.

It was wide open in the first period, with the teams trading chances and each coming up with a goal. The highlight was the Islanders getting three breakaways while killing a penalty, although they failed to score on them.

Barzal took a pass at the Montreal blue line, blew past rookie defenseman Noah Juulsen and beat Niemi with a deke to the backhand at 3:50. Bryan tied it with 8:58 left in the period, beating Jaroslav Halak to the top corner off an assist from Drouin.

Drouin gave the Canadiens the lead on a power play at 8:29 of the second. He moved into the left circle to take a feed from Jeff Petry and put a shot inside the far post. Scherbak scored with 6:23 to go in the period (see full recap).

Brayden Schenn nets 20th goal as Blues cruise

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Brayden Schenn nets 20th goal as Blues cruise

ST. LOUIS -- Carter Hutton made 25 saves for his 10th career shutout and the St. Louis Blues got goals from Vladimir Sobotka and Vladimir Tarasenko in a 3-0 victory over the struggling Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night.

Brayden Schenn, who also had an assist, added an empty-net goal at 17:34 of the third period. It was his 20th goal of the season.

The game was a bounce-back effort for Hutton, pulled after giving up three goals on 12 shots in Saturday's 5-2 loss to Arizona.

Hutton, normally the Blues' backup, started for the fourth consecutive game and eighth in the last 10. He earned his second shutout this season (see full recap).

Lightning top Preds before visiting Flyers
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Down a goal late in the third period in the second game of a back-to-back, the Tampa Bay Lightning looked to captain Steven Stamkos and he got the tying score. Yanni Gourde then came through in overtime.

Gourde scored 1:45 into the extra period to give Tampa Bay a 4-3 victory over the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night.

Chris Kunitz had a goal and two assists, and Vladislav Namestnikov also scored as the Lightning won their second straight. Louis Domingue stopped 30 shots.

"It was all about our compete," Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said. "It was about nothing else but our compete. They are a hell of a team over there. They just keep coming at you,” (see full recap).

Dea scores 1st NHL goal, Pens beat Hurricanes
PITTSBURGH -- Not much more than a month ago, Dominik Simon, Jean-Sebastien Dea and Casey DeSmith were playing minor league hockey in Wilkes-Barre for the AHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Fast forward to Tuesday night, when that unlikely trio carried Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and the two-time defending Stanley Cup champions to an important win.

Simon and Dea scored 76 seconds apart in the second period, and DeSmith made 34 saves for the Penguins in a 3-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes.

"They've been huge," Jake Geunztel said of his rookie teammates. "They're playing really well, and they have that excitement to be here. We have all been there -- and to see that, it's cool to be around, for sure,” (see full recap).

Eichel's 4 points lead Sabres to win over Oilers
EDMONTON, Alberta -- Jack Eichel had a goal and three assists, Ryan O'Reilly scored twice and the Buffalo Sabres earned an easy 5-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night.

Sam Reinhart had a goal and two assists and Zemgus Girgensons also scored for the last-place Sabres (13-26-9), who won their second game in a row for just the second time this season. The other time was in late October.

Robin Lehner made 33 saves for his second shutout of the season.

Cam Talbot started in net and stopped 18 of 22 shots in 31:32 of work before Al Montoya turned aside 11 of 12 in relief for the Oilers (21-24-3), who had a three-game winning streak snapped (see full recap).