The host Buffalo Sabres, the hottest team in the NHL, got an overtime goal from Jeff Skinner to win their eighth straight game, defeating the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 on Friday afternoon.
Skinner had the tying goal with 2:26 left in the third period and then scored again, this time on a power play with 3:06 expired in the extra session. He has 17 goals this season, which is tied for the NHL lead with David Pastrnak.
This marks Buffalo’s longest victory streak since it tied a franchise record by winning 10 straight to begin the 2006-07 season. This season’s hot streak represents an amazing turnaround for a Buffalo franchise that ranked 29th in goals allowed and last in goals scored last season.
Rookies have fueled much of this Sabres streak, including Casey Mittelstadt, who scored Buffalo’s first goal on Friday, and star defenseman Rasmus Dahlin, who had an assist on Skinner’s game-winner.
Golden Knights 2, Flames 0
Marc-Andre Fleury had 29 saves for his league-leading fourth shutout of the season as Vegas became the first team this season to shut out visiting Calgary.
It was the 52nd career shutout for Fleury. He did it against a Flames team that had scored 17 goals in its previous three games, including seven in a win over the Golden Knights on Monday night in Calgary.
Alex Tuch, playing in his 100th NHL game, and Colin Miller each scored goals for Vegas. David Rittich had 26 saves in suffering just his second defeat in 10 decisions this season.
Avalanche 5, Coyotes 1
J.T. Compher made a dazzling return to the lineup with a pair of short-handed goals on a first-period penalty kill as Colorado beat host Arizona in Glendale, Ariz.
NHL points leader Mikko Rantanen also scored for the Avalanche, shortly after Compher’s first-period shorties, to give Colorado a commanding 3-0 lead against Arizona goalie Antti Raanta just 10 minutes into the contest.
Compher became the fourth player in the past 15 years with two short-handed goals in a span of less than two minutes.
Wild 4, Jets 2
Down 2-0 through two periods, Wild launched a furious comeback in the third period to record a win over visiting Winnipeg.
Eric Staal was in position in front of the Jets’ net to bank in a rebound at 17:29 of the third period to put the Wild ahead for good.
Minnesota outshot Winnipeg by a 23-22 margin in the first two periods, but was hampered by five scoreless power-play chances. In five-on-five play, however, the Wild kept up the pressure, outshooting the Jets by a 16-6 margin in the final period to break down the defense with four unanswered goals.
Blue Jackets 4, Maple Leafs 2
Josh Anderson scored twice in the first period, and Cam Atkinson scored a short-handed goal to break a tie in the second period as Columbus defeated visiting Toronto.
Markus Hannikainen scored in the third period for the Blue Jackets, who avenged a Monday night loss to the Maple Leafs. It was Atkinson’s sixth straight game with a goal and it was his eighth in that span.
Ron Hainsey and Kasperi Kapanen scored for the Maple Leafs, who have lost two games in a row.
Bruins 2, Penguins 1 (OT)
Joakim Nordstrom scored 1:57 into overtime to give Boston Bruins a win over visiting Pittsburgh.
Nordstrom, in front of the net, deflected a pass from Torey Krug past goaltender Tristan Jarry. Jake DeBrusk also scored for Boston, which was playing its first home game since Nov. 11 and coming off a 1-1-2 road trip.
Evgeni Malkin scored for Pittsburgh, which is 2-7-3 in its past 12 games.
Lightning 4, Blackhawks 2
Tyler Johnson scored a pair of goals, and Tampa Bay cruised to a win over visiting Chicago.
Brayden Point and Ryan Callahan also scored for the Lightning, who beat the Blackhawks for the second time in five weeks to sweep the regular-season series. Nikita Kucherov notched three assists, and Erik Cernak had two.
Artem Anisimov and Jonathan Toews each scored in a losing effort. Chicago has won only two of eight games since firing longtime head coach Joel Quenneville and replacing him with Jeremy Colliton.
Ducks 2, Oilers 1
Rickard Rakell scored on a breakaway 14 seconds into overtime as Anaheim rallied for a victory against visiting Edmonton.
The Ducks tied the score on Nick Ritchie’s goal with 16.2 seconds remaining in regulation. Rakell got an assist on that goal.
The Oilers suffered their first defeat in the Ken Hitchcock era. Hitchcock replaced the fired Todd McLellan as coach Tuesday. Edmonton won 4-3 in overtime at San Jose in Hitchcock’s debut the same day.
Flyers 4, Rangers 0
Sean Couturier scored two goals, while Travis Konecny and Jordan Weal each scored one to lift host Philadelphia past New York.
Claude Giroux had three assists for the Flyers. Konecny contributed two assists and Couturier had one as the Flyers snapped a four-game losing streak.
Philadelphia goaltender Cal Pickard was solid throughout in stopping all 31 shots for the shutout, his first of the season and fourth of his career.
Blues 6, Predators 2
Brayden Schenn, Alex Pietrangelo and Ryan O’Reilly each collected one goal and one assist as host St. Louis snapped a three-game losing streak by beating Nashville.
Blues goalie Jake Allen made 26 saves as St. Louis claimed the second half of a home-and-home series with the top team in the NHL.
Predators goalie Juuse Sauros was chased after allowing five goals on 15 shots. Pekka Rinne stopped 18 of 19 shots in relief for Nashville, which had its three-game winning streak ended.
Capitals 3, Red Wings 1
Michal Kempny scored the tie-breaking goal, and Alex Ovechkin added an insurance marker less than two minutes later in the third period as Washington rallied for a come-from-behind victory over visiting Detroit.
Kempny had not scored a goal this season before the Capitals’ last game, a victory over his former team (Chicago). He got his second goal in two games on a high slap shot from near the left point at the 6:38 mark of the third period.
Ovechkin then made it 3-1 on a blast from the right circle at the end of a rush at the 8:34 mark. He finished the game with one goal and one assist.
Sharks 4, Canucks 0
Erik Karlsson scored once and added two assists to pace the attack, and goalie Aaron Dell needed just 19 saves to collect his second consecutive shutout as the host San Jose handed Vancouver another loss.
After a slow start to his time with the Sharks following the offseason trade that sent him from Ottawa to Northern California, Karlsson has found his form. He’s netted two goals and eight points over the last five games.
The Sharks are also riding a 4-1-1 run that has them back atop the Pacific Division.
Stars 6, Senators 4
Miro Heiskanen scored two goals, and Alexander Radulov, Mattias Janmark and Devin Shore added a pair of assists apiece as Dallas defeated visiting Ottawa.
The Stars racked up 53 shots on goal in the win, snapping a two-game losing streak. Dallas scored four goals in a 14-minute stretch that bridged the end of the second and start of the third period.
The Senators’ loss was the third straight and dropped them to 2-7-1 in away games this season.
Hurricanes 4, Panthers 1
Jordan Martinook scored a hat trick for Carolina in a victory against visiting Florida in Raleigh, N.C., in a game marred by an injury to Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo.
Luongo, a veteran goalie in his ninth game of the season, exited with an apparent injury to his left leg. The team later announced he had a lower-body injury and wouldn’t return.
Carolina goalie Curtis McElhinney made 34 saves. The Hurricanes, who won their third game in a row, wrapped up a six-game homestand with a 4-1-1 record.
Islanders 4, Devils 3 (OT)
Mathew Barzal scored with 1:20 left in overtime as visiting New York edged New Jersey in Newark, N.J.
Barzal scored on a semi-breakaway during a shift change. His first shot was turned back by Keith Kinkaid, but Barzal put the rebound into the net as the Islanders snapped a two-game losing streak and won for just the third time in the last eight games (3-4-1).
Jordan Eberle, Anders Lee and Nick Leddy also scored for the Islanders. Goalie Thomas Greiss made 39 saves.
—Field Level Media