Winnipeg Jets

Jets clinch playoff berth with shootout win over Predators

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Jets clinch playoff berth with shootout win over Predators

WINNIPEG, Manitoba — Mark Scheifele scored the only goal in a shootout and the Winnipeg Jets clinched a playoff spot with a 5-4 win over the Nashville Predators on Sunday night.

The Jets are in the postseason for the first time since 2014-15 and just the second time since their relocation from Atlanta before the 2011-12 season. The franchise hasn't won a playoff series since 2007.

Jets rookie Kyle Connor scored a power-play goal and had two assists, giving him seven goals in six games. That includes a pair of overtime goals in Winnipeg's previous two games and gives him 29 on the season. That's tied with Vancouver's Brock Boeser for the rookie goal scoring lead. Boeser's season ended March 5 with a fracture in his lower back.

Dustin Byfuglien also scored on the power play, and Bryan Little and Blake Wheeler each added a goal and an assist for Winnipeg (see full recap).

Marchand scores in OT to lift Bruins over Wild
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Brad Marchand scored 28 seconds into overtime to lift the Boston Bruins over the Minnesota Wild 2-1 on Sunday night.

Tuukka Rask made 24 saves and David Pastrnak also scored for the Bruins, who improved to 47-17-10.

Marchand got his second goal in two games and his third in a four-game span. His 33rd of the season was his eighth game-winner, tying a career high. Marchand also assisted on the first goal.

Boston appeared to score first when Noel Acciari found the back of the net early in the second period. However, the goal was waved off after officials reviewed it and ruled that Boston's Riley Nash ran into goalie Alex Stalock.

Just over a minute later, the Bruins beat Stalock on one that counted. Pastrnak notched his 30th of the season — and second in two games — when his one-timer on a feed from Patrice Bergeron sailed past Stalock (see full recap).

Rare power play goals power Canucks past Stars
DALLAS — Reid Boucher and Nic Dowd scored rare goals on the power play, and the Vancouver Canucks rallied to beat the reeling Dallas Stars 4-1 on Sunday night.

Dallas' Mattias Janmark started the scoring with a short-handed goal in the first period, but Boucher tied it on the same man advantage. It was Boucher's third goal this season, all coming over two games in Dallas.

Dowd scored his third goal with one second left on a four-minute power play in the second period.

Jake Virtanen added a third-period goal and Tyler Motte scored into an empty net for Vancouver, which won for only the second time in 10 games.

The Stars are on an 0-6-2 skid and have all but fallen out of playoff contention. With six games remaining, they are five points behind St. Louis for the second wild card from the Western Conference. The eight-game losing streak is the longest since the Stars moved to Dallas in 1993 (see full recap).

Ovechkin scores a seat in an exclusive club

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Ovechkin scores a seat in an exclusive club

WASHINGTON -- Alex Ovechkin scored twice to reach 600 goals and Evgeny Kuznetsov had the overtime winner as the Washington Capitals returned to first place by beating the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 on Monday.

Ovechkin scored in each of the first two periods to get to 42 this season. The Russian winger became the 20th player and fourth-fastest in NHL history to 600 goals and is on pace to lead the league in goals for the seventh time.

Kuznetsov made it a night of celebration for Washington by scoring on a breakaway 4:11 into overtime.

Ovechkin's historic performance was crucial on a night when Jets winger Patrik Laine scored his 16th in the past 12 games to get to 41 this season. Nikolaj Ehlers also scored a 4-on-4 goal for Winnipeg, which got 40 saves from Connor Hellebuyck.

Capitals goaltender Philipp Grubauer stopped 26 shots in his third consecutive start (see full recap).

Jones, Blue Jackets continue to surge
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Seth Jones scored two first-period power-play goals, and the Columbus Blue Jackets won their fifth straight, 5-2 over the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night.

Nick Foligno, Boone Jenner and Ian Cole also scored, Alexander Wennberg had three assists and Artemi Panarin recorded two assists for Columbus.

Behind a run of eight wins in 11 games overall and a season-high six straight at home -- including a just-completed four-game homestand -- the Blue Jackets moved past idle New Jersey into the first wild-card position in the Eastern Conference. Columbus also edged within two points of third-place Philadelphia in the Metropolitan Division.

Down 4-2 until late, Montreal put Sergei Bobrovsky to the test in the third period. The two-time Vezina Trophy winner stopped all 24 shots the suddenly energetic Canadiens threw his way. He had 38 saves overall (see full recap).

Vesey, Zuccarello help Rangers down Hurricanes
NEW YORK -- Jimmy Vesey scored three times, Mats Zuccarello had two goals and the New York Rangers beat the Carolina Hurricanes 6-3 on Monday night.

Vladislav Namestnikov also scored for the Rangers, who ended a three-game losing streak and earned their first home win since Feb. 9. Pavel Buchnevich and Mika Zibanejad each had three assists.

Backup goalie Alexandar Georgiev made 41 saves for his second win of the season.

Teuvo Teravainen, Lee Stempniak and Victor Rask scored for the Hurricanes. Scott Darling, who has struggled in his first season with Carolina, made 17 stops.

Tied at 3 in the third, Vesey took a loose puck at the left faceoff circle and wristed a high shot past Darling at 12:15.

Zuccarello added an empty-netter at 17:23 for his 14th of the season and Vesey capped his hat trick with an empty-netter in the final minute for his 15th goal this season (see full recap).

Flyers say goodbye to skid … and maybe hello to streak

Flyers say goodbye to skid … and maybe hello to streak


Who knows where the Flyers would be without their streaky nature.

This season (and years past, too), when the Flyers have lost a game, it has tended to spill into the next.

Fortunately for them, victories have come in bunches, too.

So when the Flyers countered a deflating fifth straight defeat by beating one of the NHL's top-five teams, it wasn't crazy to think this could be the start of another run.

With wounds still fresh from a crushing last-minute defeat to the Bruins, the Flyers impressively turned the page Saturday by picking up a 2-1 win over the Jets at the Wells Fargo Center (see observations).

"I think after Boston, we got together, we talked about it and we can't let it faze us," Claude Giroux said. "We moved on and hopefully a game like this can get us going."

Would anyone be surprised if it does?

The Flyers have suffered losing streaks of 10 games, five games (their most recent) and four games this season. They've also won six straight twice and own three four-game winning spurts, as well.

"When you get the result, it is a lot easier to carry that energy and that positive energy as you go forward," Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol said. "It doesn't mean there aren't things out of this game that we have to clean up because there are. So we will do that. We will address that. We needed the two points. Just looking at the standings, we needed it. It was a good win for us to get headed in the right direction — not just having good efforts."

No, the Flyers didn't play a perfect game against Winnipeg, but there were plenty of positives, especially off a 0-4-1 stretch to open March.

For one, Giroux's production only continued with his 24th goal of the season and 81st point, tied for third most in the NHL. Once Giroux handed the Flyers a 1-0 lead in the second period, Andrew MacDonald tacked on another goal less than three minutes later to make it 2-0.

That was enough for Petr Mrazek, who got himself right along with the Flyers. The goalie was 0-3-1 with a 4.42 goals-against average in his last four games. He looked nothing like that form by making big stops against the likes of Patrik Laine, Blake Wheeler and Nikolaj Ehlers (see highlights).

"You cannot focus just for one guy," Mrazek said. "When you look at their lineup, you see a lot of big names there, they can shoot and score.

"You have to be lucky in a couple of situations, but obviously you have to be big in net."

Most importantly, though, the Flyers held the NHL's second-ranked power play in check as the Jets' man advantage went 1 for 4. Laine scored his 40th goal of the season, but not until the 8:58 mark of the third period as the Flyers nailed down a timely win with 13 games left on the regular-season schedule (see standings).

"They've got one of the most lethal guys obviously in the league," Hakstol said. "I thought overall, collectively throughout the game, the PK was outstanding."

Which is one aspect that could make for another streak.

With these Flyers, you just have to wait and see.