NHL Three Stars: Spooner's pair leads Bruins; Johnson nets OT winner for Bolts
No. 1 Star: Ryan Spooner, Boston Bruins
Spooner scored twice in the first period as the Bruins built a 3-0 lead that would finish as a 3-1 win over the Ottawa Senators. Birthday boy Tuukka Rask made 39 saves as the Bruins increased their wild card cushion over the Florida Panthers to six points. Boston has now won three straight and six out of their last eight games.
No. 2 Star: Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Lightning
After going 60 minutes without a goal, Johnson needed only 63 seconds of overtime to give the Lightning a 1-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Ben Bishop made 19 saves for his third shutout of the season and 11th of his career.
No. 3 Star: Scott Hartnell, Columbus Blue Jackets
Hartnell’s two power play goals helped the Blue Jackets come-from-behind and defeat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3. Ryan Johansen would score the only goal in the shootout to give the Blue Jackets the extra point. Down 3-1 after the first, Hartnell popped one early in the second, then tied the game 6:10 into the third period.
Honorable Mention: Justin Faulk chipped in a goal and two assists in a losing effort for Carolina … Rick Nash’s 39th goal of the season was the decisive tally as the New York Rangers edged the New York Islanders 2-1 in possibly their final meeting at Nassau Coliseum. Cam Talbot made 29 saves to improve to 11-2-3 since taking over for an injured Henrik Lundqvist. Kevin Hayes scored the Rangers’ first goal after a great solo effort … Kari Lehtonen made 25 saves and Vernon Fiddler scored the go-ahead goal 13:50 into the third period as the Dallas Stars downed the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1. The win was Lehtonen’s first against Philadelphia:
Carey Price stopped 35 shots in the Montreal loss … Barret Jackman scored his first goal in 36 games with 1:03 left to help give the St. Louis Blues a 5-4 win over the Winnipeg Jets. Vladimir Tarasenko, Jaden Schwartz and Jori Lehtera each had a goal and an assist as the Blues beat the Jets for the eighth consecutive time. Lehtera's goal came after some pretty tic-tac-toe action:
Thomas Vanek potted a pair of goals and Zach Parise, Jared Spurgeon and Chris Stewart each added two points of their own as the Minnesota Wild defeated the New Jersey Devils 6-2. Devan Dubnyk made 30 saves in his 26th straight start. He’s now 19-4-1 since coming to the Wild … Brayden McNabb scored goal a goal and assisted on two others as the Los Angeles Kings beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-2. Jonathan Quick made 20 saves for his third win in four starts.
Did You Know? “Dubnyk's 26 straight starts are the most in the NHL since Anaheim's Jonas Hiller started 32 straight in 2011-12. Before joining Minnesota in a trade on Jan. 14, Dubnyk started just 17 games with Arizona.” (AP)
Dishonorable Mention: The Flyers have dropped three straight and now sit nine points away from a wild card spot in the Eastern Conference … Ondrej Palat left the game in the second period after taking a shot to the foot … Winnipeg has dropped eight of their last nine away from home … Ondrej Pavelec is going to want this one back ... Colorado’s three-game winning streak came to an end.
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