Four different players scored while Cam Talbot posted the shutout, as the Calgary Flames beat the Winnipeg Jets 4-0 Thursday in Edmonton to clinch their Western Conference qualifying round series.
Dillon Dube, Sam Bennett, Sean Monahan and Rasmus Andersson all scored for the Flames, who beat the Jets in four games to become the first Western-based squad to win a qualifying-round set. They will start the Stanley Cup playoffs as early as Tuesday.
Talbot made 31 saves for his third career playoff shutout against a Jets team that was decimated by injuries. Winnipeg lost top level forwards Mark Scheifele and Patrik Laine in the first game of the series, as well as Mason Appleton. They were also without center Bryan Little due to an injury sustained during the regular season.
Dube opened the scoring with his first playoff goal. Dube was denied on his first rebound opportunity after Erik Gustafsson’s point shot was stopped, but slipped home his second chance just 3:21 into the game. It was the first time in the series that Calgary scored first.
Blue Jackets 4, Maple Leafs 3 (OT)
Pierre-Luc Dubois scored 18:24 into the first overtime period to complete his hat trick and give Columbus a stunning comeback win over host Toronto in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference qualifying round series. The victory gives the Jackets a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series.
Down 3-0 just over halfway through the contest, the Blue Jackets, who had scored only two goals in the first two games, suddenly sprung to life. Dubois’ overtime winner capped off his second career hat trick (regular season or overtime), in his first multi-goal performance in 19 career playoff games.
Seth Jones scored the Jackets’ other goal, and Cam Atkinson had two assists for the Blue Jackets. Elvis Merzlikins stopped 21 of 21 shots in relief of Columbus starting goaltender Joonas Korpisalo. The Maple Leafs got goals from Cody Ceci, William Nylander and rookie Nick Robertson.
Canucks 3, Wild 0
Jacob Markstrom made 27 saves to lead Vancouver to a win over Minnesota in Game 3 of their best-of-five Western Conference qualifying series in Edmonton.
Brock Boeser and Elias Pettersson each had a goal and an assist, Antoine Roussel also scored, and Quinn Hughes assisted on all three goals for the Canucks, who took a 2-1 series lead heading into Game 4 on Friday night.
Markstrom has started all three games in the series after not appearing in a playoff game in his first nine NHL seasons. Alex Stalock, who shut out the Canucks in Game 1, made 26 saves for Minnesota.
Flyers 3, Capitals 0
Scott Laughton scored two goals and added an assist, while Kevin Hayes had helpers on all three goals as Philadelphia defeated Washington in both teams’ second game of the Eastern Conference round-robin competition in Toronto.
Travis Sanheim also scored, and Travis Konecny finished with two assists for the Flyers, who improved to 2-0 in the round robin and will face 2-0 Tampa Bay on Saturday. The winner will earn the East’s top seed.
Philadelphia goalie Brian Elliott got the start, and the 35-year old veteran came through, making 16 saves in the defensive struggle. Braden Holtby made 18 saves for Washington, which will face Boston on Sunday to determine the third and fourth seeds in the East.
Golden Knights 6, Blues 4
Alex Tuch had two goals and an assist, and Shea Theodore also scored twice to lead Vegas over St. Louis in a round-robin game of the Stanley Cup qualifiers in Edmonton.
Mark Stone scored what proved to be the game-winner with 7:29 left in the third period, and Zach Whitecloud also scored for the Golden Knights (2-0-0, 4 points), who will play the Colorado Avalanche (2-0-0, 4 points) for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference on Saturday. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 13 of 17 shots.
Colton Parayko scored two goals, and David Perron and Troy Brouwer also scored for the Blues (0-2-0, 0 points), who will face the Dallas Stars (0-2-0, 0 points) for the third seed on Sunday. Ryan O’Reilly and Zach Sanford each added two assists. Jordan Binnington finished with 32 saves.
--Field Level Media
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