Sabres make it 6 straight with OT victory vs Bruins
BOSTON (AP) — Alex Tuch scored his second goal of the game in overtime, and the Buffalo Sabres rallied for a 4-3 victory over the NHL-best Boston Bruins on Saturday for their sixth straight win.
Tage Thompson scored his team-leading 27th goal and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen stopped 37 shots for the Sabres, who won for just the second time in their last 11 games against the Bruins.
Trailing 3-2 and skating with an extra attacker after pulling its goalie, Buffalo tied it when Dylan Cozens slipped a wrister past Jeremy Swayman with 1:37 to play.
Boston’s Brad Marchand had scored the go-ahead goal on a clean breakaway after setting up Patrice Bergeron’s tying score just over five minutes into the third period.
David Pastrnak added his 25th goal and Swayman made 21 saves for the Bruins, who remained unbeaten in regulation at home at 18-0-3.
CAPITALS 9, CANADIENS 2
WASHINGTON (AP) — Alex Ovechkin recorded his 30th career hat trick to speed up his pursuit of Wayne Gretkzy’s goal record, Charlie Lindgren made 31 saves against his first NHL team and Washington skated circles around Montreal.
Ovechkin’s 804th, 805th and 806th career goals put him 88 back of Gretzky’s mark that long seemed unapproachable. He has scored six times in four games to reach 26 this season, past the halfway point to his 10th 50-goal season, which would be one more than the “Great One.”
Lindgren won for the ninth time in his past 10 starts.
Erik Gustafsson and fourth-liners Garnet Hathaway and Nic Dowd scored before Ovechkin made it 4-1. Dylan Strome had a power-play goal late in the second period and Anthony Mantha added a goal. Marcus Johansson also scored for the Capitals, who have won 11 of 13.
Gustafsson has six goals and five assists during a Capitals season-best seven-game point streak. Evgeny Kuznetsov, who set up the goals by Gustafsson and Strome, has points in five in a row.
Cole Caufield scored his 20th and 21st goals of the season for the Canadiens in their fifth consecutive loss. Jake Allen allowed nine goals on 38 shots for the Canadiens, who have dropped eight of nine.
MAPLE LEAFS 6, AVALANCHE 2
DENVER (AP) — Michael Bunting had two goals, Auston Matthews and T.J. Brodie scored 24 seconds apart, and Toronto spoiled Nathan MacKinnon’s return with a win over Colorado.
Matthews added an assist to his 18th goal. Mitch Marner and Pierre Engvall also scored, and Matt Murray stopped 26 shots for the Maple Leafs.
MacKinnon missed 10 games with an upper-body injury sustained Dec. 5. His initial timeline was a return next week, but he was able to get back early, finishing minus-3 in 22:19 of ice time.
J.T. Compher had a goal and an assist, and Devon Toews also scored for the Avalanche.
GOLDEN KNIGHTS 5, PREDATORS 4, OT
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nic Hague scored on a delayed penalty with 2:56 left in overtime, helping Vegas overcome a hat trick by Filip Forsberg in a win over Nashville.
Vegas is 4-0 on the final day of the year, and heads into the new year with a Western Conference-leading 52 points.
Chandler Stephenson had a goal and two assists for the Golden Knights. Keegan Kolesar added a goal and an assist, and Mark Stone had three assists.
Vegas led 4-2 in the third period before Forsberg scored twice, including on a 6-on-4 with 3.3 seconds left in regulation.
Forsberg’s three goals gave him 501 career points. He is the third Predators player to reach 500. He has scored in three straight games and has five goals and two assists in that span.
Nashville went ahead 2-0 in the first period on goals by Forsberg and Jeremy Lauzon. Vegas went in front in the second on goals from Michael Amadio and Reilly Smith.
LIGHTNING 5, COYOTES 3
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Steven Stamkos scored his 498th goal and Tampa Bay rallied to beat Arizona.
Stamkos stopped a six-game goal drought, putting the Lightning ahead 3-2 during a power play at 11:12 of the second period. The star center tied Glenn Anderson for 47th place on the career goals list.
Tampa Bay’s captain also had a third-period assist and tied Pat LaFontaine for 89th on the career points list with 1,013.
Brayden Point, Mikhail Sergachev, Alex Killorn and Brandon Hagel also scored as the Lightning won their seventh straight home game.
Point set a team record with a goal in eight consecutive home games. Victor Hedman had three assists, and Nikita Kucherov added two helpers to reach 40 assists in 35 games, the fastest in franchise history.
Andrei Vasilevskiy, starting for the third time in four days, made 29 saves.
Arizona, which has lost nine straight road games (0-7-2), got goals from Travis Boyd, Christian Fischer and Nick Bjugstad. Karel Vejmelka stopped 30 shots.
WILD 5, BLUES 2
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Ryan Hartman scored twice to help Minnesota beat St. Louis in their first meeting since the first round of the playoffs last season.
Jordan Greenway, Matt Dumba and Jared Spurgeon also scored for the Wild. Marc-Andre Fleury made 29 saves.
Minnesota has earned at least one point in eight of its last nine games.
Calle Rosen and Robert Bortuzzo scored for the Blues. Jordan Binnington stopped 27 of 31 shots, falling to 7-2-1 in 10 career starts against the Wild.
STARS 5, SHARKS 2
DALLAS (AP) — Fredrik Olofsson’s first NHL goal was the eventual winner as Dallas topped San Jose for its season-best fourth straight victory.
Joe Pavelski had a goal and two assists, and Jason Robertson added a goal and an assist for the Stars. Jake Oettinger made 28 saves.
Roope Hintz scored a short-handed goal with 4:42 to play, and Esa Lindell scored into an empty net with 1:13 left.
Erik Karlsson, who leads NHL defensemen with 51 points, extended his point streak to 12 games — every game the Sharks played in December — to tie a franchise record.
Alexander Barabanov and Oskar Lindblom scored for San Jose. James Reimer stopped 26 shots, but the Sharks have lost three straight (0-2-1) and six of seven (1-4-2).
FLYERS 4, KINGS 2
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Noah Cates scored the go-ahead goal short-handed in the third period, Owen Tippett had a goal and an assist, and Philadelphia snapped Los Angeles’ seven-game point streak.
Scott Laughton and Travis Konecny also scored for the Flyers, who have won three of five. Rookie goalie Samuel Ersson stopped 27 shots.
Philip Danault had a goal and extended his point streak to seven games for the Kings, who were 6-0-1 in their previous seven. Adrian Kempe also scored and Jonathan Quick made 19 saves.
BLUE JACKETS 4, BLACKHAWKS 1
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Gustav Nyquist scored two short-handed goals, Joonas Korpisalo made 26 saves and Columbus ended a seven-game losing streak by beating Chicago.
Emil Bemstrom and Kirill Marchenko scored for the Blue Jackets. Johnny Gaudreau had two assists to give him 13 in December, tying a franchise record set by Artemi Panarin in 2017.
Andreas Athanasiou scored and Alex Stalock made 34 saves for the Blackhawks, who have one win in 12 games — against the Blue Jackets on Dec. 23.
RED WINGS 4, SENATORS 2
DETROIT (AP) — Lucas Raymond had a goal and an assist, and Detroit scored three times in the first 3 1/2 minutes of the third period to beat Ottawa.
Elmer Soderblom had the go-ahead goal for the Red Wings, who trailed 2-1 entering the final period. Pius Suter and Michael Rasmussen also scored, while Magnus Hellberg made 20 saves.
Austin Watson and Claude Giroux scored for the Senators, and Cam Talbot stopped 21 shots.
Drake Batherson extended his point streak to 13 games for Ottawa with a first-period assist.
JETS 2, OILERS 1
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Neal Pionk and Kyle Connor each had a goal and an assist as Winnipeg defeated Edmonton.
Connor Hellebuyck made 31 saves for the Jets.
Klim Kostin scored for the Oilers, who have lost four straight at home. Connor McDavid’s point streak was stopped at 17 games.
FLAMES 3, CANUCKS 2
CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Flames defenseman Mackenzie Weegar scored his first goal with Calgary and added an assist in a victory over Vancouver.
Elias Lindholm and Blake Coleman also scored for Calgary, which has points in 12 of its last 15 games (8-3-4).
Sheldon Dries and Elias Pettersson scored for the Canucks, who have dropped two straight on the road after winning seven in a row in opposition rinks.
Jacob Markstrom made 22 saves for the Flames. Spencer Martin stopped 27 shots for Vancouver.
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