Lightning top Kings 4-3 in shootout for 9th straight win
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos and Victor Hedman scored in the shootout and the NHL-leading Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Los Angeles Kings 4-3 for their ninth straight victory Monday night, matching the longest winning streak in franchise history.
J.T. Miller’s third-period goal forced overtime, and Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 30 shots for the Lightning, who improved the league’s best record to 48-11-4 and became the fourth team to reach 100 points in 63 games or less.
Alex Iafallo, Jonny Brodzinski and Austin Wagner scored in the third period, helping Los Angeles turn a two-goal deficit into a short-lived 3-2 lead that goalie Jack Campbell couldn’t protect. The Kings have lost eight straight, their longest skid since December 2007.
Braden Point and Anthony Cirelli had first-period goals for the Lightning, who fell behind when Brodzinski and Wagner scored in a 36-second span. Miller countered less than a minute later to make it 3-all.
Kucherov got his 71st assist on Tampa Bay’s first goal, giving him a league-leading and career-best 101 points.
PREDATORS 3, OILERS 2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Brian Boyle scored in the fourth round of a shootout to lift Nashville over Edmonton.
P.K. Subban had a goal and an assist, and Colton Sissons also scored as the Predators won for the third time in four games to pass Winnipeg for first place in the Central Division. The Jets have three games in hand.
Pekka Rinne made a pad save on Ty Rattie when the Oilers forward tried to extend the shootout.
Leon Draisaitl scored twice for Edmonton, which won its previous two games.
Kyle Turris and Ryan Ellis each hit the post as the first two shooters for Nashville in the tiebreaker. After Filip Forsberg scored for the Predators, Sam Gagner forced the shootout to sudden death.
MAPLE LEAFS 5, SABRES 3
TORONTO (AP) — John Tavares, Auston Matthews and Frederik Gauthier scored three quick goals in the second period and Toronto held off Buffalo.
Tyler Ennis had the eventual winner in Toronto’s four-goal second and Kasperi Kapanen added some insurance with a short-handed goal in the third.
Matthews is the first player in Maple Leafs history to score 30-plus goals in the first three seasons of his NHL career.
Frederik Andersen made 31 saves for his 100th win with Toronto.
Jack Eichel scored twice and Sam Reinhart had a goal, but the Sabres’ playoff chances took another hit.
DEVILS 2, CANADIENS 1
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Nathan Bastian scored his first NHL goal, Kurtis Gabriel got his second and last-place New Jersey continued to be a thorn in Montreal’s playoff hopes.
Recently acquired defenseman Connor Carrick set up both goals and Cory Schneider made 34 saves as the young Devils swept their three-game season series with the Canadiens.
Montreal had a lot more at stake. It came into the night with a one-point lead over Carolina and Pittsburgh for the top wild card in the Eastern Conference. The Hurricanes and Penguins now each have a game in hand.
Paul Byron scored a short-handed goal for Montreal, and Carey Price made 20 saves.
PANTHERS 4, AVALANCHE 3, OT
DENVER (AP) — Aaron Ekblad scored 26 seconds into overtime, Roberto Luongo stopped 36 shots to earn career win No. 485 and Florida beat Colorado.
The winning play was set up when Mike Hoffman sped down the ice, spun past defenseman Samuel Girard and sent a pass over to Ekblad, whose shot slid through the pads of Semyon Varlamov. The Avalanche fell to 1-12 in OT this season.
Hoffman had a goal midway through the third period to tie the game. Troy Brouwer and Evgenii Dadonov scored 1:09 apart late in the second period to erase a 2-0 deficit. The win moved Luongo past Ed Belfour for third place on the career list.
Derick Brassard, Mikko Rantanen and Tyson Jost scored for the Avalanche as their four-game winning streak was halted. Varlamov made 34 saves.
Brassard nearly had the winner in his Colorado debut on a goal with 12:11 remaining. But his former teammate, Hoffman, stole his thunder by tying it minutes later.
It was a wild day for Brassard, who woke up Monday morning as a member of the Panthers only to be traded to the Avalanche.
CANUCKS 4, DUCKS 0
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Jacob Markstrom made 29 saves for his first shutout of the season and Bo Horvat scored twice to lead Vancouver past Anaheim.
Alex Biega and Nikolay Goldobin also scored as the Canucks snapped a three-game skid and won in regulation for the first time in their last 11.
The shutout was the third of Markstrom’s career. His previous one came against Dallas on Feb. 11, 2018.
Kevin Boyle stopped 25 shots for the Ducks.