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Hockey News

Summary of NHL games, Thursday, March 30, 2023

The Pittsburgh Penguins remain above the fray in the Eastern playoff race following a key 2-0 win over the Nashville Predators on Thursday.

Thanks to this gain, Pittsburgh still occupies the second and last place which gives access to the playoffs in the East among the teams drafted with a priority of one point. The Penguins are in a tough fight against the Florida Panthers, who defeated the Canadiens earlier in the evening. They have a game in hand over Florida.

Goaltender Tristan Jarry blocked all 28 shots his way to sign the shutout.

The Predators have lost three of their last four games.

After a scoreless first period, Jason Zucker opened the scoring at 14:15 of the middle period on assists from Brian Dumoulin and Evgeni Malkin.

It’s the sixth time this season that Zucker has scored his first goal, two behind Penguins point guard Sidney Crosby, who has scored eight times.

In the third, Jake Guentzel dealt a blow to the Predators with his 34th of the campaign during a power play with the complicity of Rickard Rakell and Kristopher Letang.

Despite the loss, goaltender Juuse Saros shone, stopping 43 of 45 shots the Penguins took.

 

The Lightning approach the Leafs

Pat Maroon scored twice as the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Washington Capitals 5-1.

Steven Stamkos and Alex Killorn each had a goal and an assist for Tampa who are within four points of the Toronto Maple Leafs and second in the Atlantic Division.

On the side of the Capitals, everything indicates that the time will run out for a participation in the playoffs. They’ve suffered a sixth loss in their last seven games and are seven points behind the Penguins for the final playoff berth in the East.

After a net from Killorn on the power play in the first period, Stamkos made the ropes vibrate with three seconds left in the engagement. He scored following a face-off won by Pierre-Édouard Bellemare.

Maroon scored back-to-back third period goals to cushion the Lightning, who were leading 4-1 at the time. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 30 saves in the win and only yielded to Craig Smith.

TJ Oshie injured his upper body in the first period and he did not return to play.

 

Devils outrun Rangers

Erik Haula and Timo Meier scored in the first period, and the New Jersey Devils held on to defeat the New York Rangers 2-1.

Vitek Vanecek held the fort making 24 saves, giving New Jersey a four-point lead over New York in the Metropolitan Division standings, with 102 points to 98.

The meeting between these two potential rivals in the first elimination round was played under the sign of robustness, while several scuffles occurred after the whistle of the referee.

Haula opened the scoring by beating Igor Shesterkin at 5:17 of the first period.

Meier doubled the lead at the end of the engagement when, posted in the middle of the enclave on the power play, he released without waiting after the nice pass that Jack Hughes reserved for him.

Chris Kreider revived Rangers fans who made the trip to Newark by donning his 33e goal of the campaign, at 13:24 of the second came, also on the massive attack.

Lindy Ruff’s troupe then managed to stifle repeated attacks from the Blueshirts, who spent more than two minutes moving to six skaters against five, late in the game.

The Devils will have a busy weekend: they will travel to Chicago on Saturday, before flying to Winnipeg for a game played on Sunday.

As for the Rangers, they will also play two games on opposing rinks, Saturday in Buffalo and Sunday in Washington, before returning home next Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

 

Walman breaks the back of the Canes

Jake Walman played heroes by scoring with 3.2 seconds left in the third period, and the Detroit Red Wings beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2.

The Wings defenseman accepted a throw from Andrew Copp and fired a wrist shot that surprised Frederik Andersen.

It was Walman’s ninth goal this season, six more than his previous best NHL tally.

Dominik Kubalik broke the ice in this duel by scoring his 20e goal of the campaign, after 59 seconds of play.

In the space of 3:36, the Canes turned the wind sideways, courtesy of Brent Burns and Jaccob Slavin.

Except Detroit benefited from a power play early on after Slavin’s goal, and captain Dylan Larkin set the record straight.

The game seemed destined to go to overtime, before Copp deprived Carolina of a minimum of one point in the standings.

The Wings (33-32-9) have now surpassed their 2022-23 season points total (74), with eight games left on the schedule.

 

The Hawks sink again

The Chicago Blackhawks continued their slide with a seventh straight loss, this time 5-3 ahead of the St. Louis Blues.

The Hawks are last in the West with a meager 54 points in 74 games.

Jakub Vrana opened the scoring in the middle period with his 10e countryside fillet. He has scored nine goals in 13 games since joining the Blues.

After a net from Andreas Athanasiou, Logan Brown and Alexey Toropchenko allowed the Blues to retreat to the locker room after 40 minutes with a 3-1 lead. The two teams exchanged goals in the third period and Brandon Saad put the final touch in an empty net with less than two minutes to go.

Petr Mrazek gave up four times on 28 shots for the Hawks while Jordan Binnington made 30 saves.

SEE ALSO:  NHL: Bruins dominate Flyers for David Krejci's 1000th game
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