— Sports

Bruins beat Devils to clinch playoff berth

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) – Patrice Bergeron scored his 20th goal, and the Boston Bruins clinched their fifth straight playoff berth with a dominating 3-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Monday night. Tuukka Rask stopped 20 shots for his second shutout of the season, and Nick Ritchie broke a scoreless tie in the second period as the Bruins won their fourth straight game and ended the Devils’ three-game winning streak. Defenseman Matt Grzelcyk scored on a deflection off Devils defenseman Ryan Murray late as the Bruins won for the 10th time in 12 games. Brad Marchand, who was playing in his 800th NHL game, and Bergeron got the assists on the third goal.

Devils goalie Scott Wedgewood finished with 39 saves.

CAPITALS, 6, RANGERS 3

NEW YORK (AP) – Daniel Sprong’s tiebreaking goal in the third period led Washington past the fading, who were knocked out of playoff contention.

Nic Dowd, Conor Sheary, Garnet Hathaway, Niklas Backstrom, and Tom Wilson also scored for the Capitals as they snapped a two-game skid. Vitek Vanecek made 23 saves to earn the 19th win of his rookie season.

Mika Zibanejad scored twice, and Kaapo Kakko also had a goal for New York, which dropped its third consecutive game. Artemi Panarin added two assists, and Igor Shesterkin stopped 34 shots, but the Rangers were eliminated from the postseason picture when Boston beat New Jersey.

After missing four games with a lower-body injury, Alex Ovechkin returned to Washington’s lineup but went to the locker room after playing 39 seconds in the first period and did not return.

WILD 6, GOLDEN KNIGHTS 5

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Jonas Brodin scored with 1:06 left, 26 seconds after Kirill Kaprizov had tied the game to help Minnesota beat Vegas.

Nick Bonino added two goals and an assist, while Joel Eriksson Ek and Kevin Fiala also scored for Minnesota, which trailed by two goals twice in the game. Cam Talbot stopped 27 shots for the Wild, who have beat West-leading Las Vegas five times in the seven matchups this season.

Mark Stone had a goal and assist. Shea Theodore, Alec Martinez, Alex Tuch, and Jonathan Marchessault also scored for the Golden Knights. Robin Lehner made 26 saves in goal.

SABRES 4, ISLANDERS 2

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – Michael Houser stopped 34 shots in his NHL debut, Sam Reinhart scored twice in Buffalo’s three-goal third period, and the Sabres rallied from a two-goal deficit.

Tage Thompson and Rasmund Asplund also scored for Buffalo. Houser spent the past 8 1/2 seasons in the minor leagues. It was his first game since March 7, 2020, with Cincinnati of the ECHL.

Adam Pelech and Oliver Wahlstrom scored for the Islanders. Semyon Varlamov, coming off three straight shutouts, finished with 36 saves.

The Islanders fell to fourth place in the Eastern Division -one point behind Boston, beating New Jersey 3-0. The Bruins also have a game in hand on the Islanders.

FLYERS 7, PENGUINS 2

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Claude Giroux had two goals and an assist. Kevin Hayes gave Philadelphia a rare early lead. The Flyers skated to an easy 7-2 victory over the first-place Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday night.

Joel Farabee had a goal, two assists, and Shayne Gostisbehere, Wade Allison, and Robert Hagg also scored for the Flyers, who snapped a three-game skid and won for just the sixth time in the last 16. Alex Lyon made 35 saves for his first victory in his fourth start.

Sidney Crosby and Jason Zucker scored for the Penguins, who fell into a tie with Washington. The Capitals have four games left, while Pittsburgh has three.

PREDATORS 4, BLUE JACKETS 3, OT

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Roman Josi scored his second goal of the game 3:24 into overtime, and Nashville tightened its hold on a playoff spot.

Filip Forsberg and Ryan Johansen had a goal and an assist, and Juuse Saros had 30 saves for Nashville. The Predators were dueling with Dallas for the Central Division’s fourth playoff spot and increased their lead to four points with the Stars’ overtime loss to Florida on Monday night. Nashville has three games remaining, and the Stars have four. Emil Bemstrom scored three goals in the third to rally Columbus from a 3-0 deficit. Elvis Merzlikins had 34 saves for Columbus.

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