WASHINGTON – Carl Soderberg and Jarome Iginla scored 41 seconds apart in the second period to break open a close game, and the Boston Bruins clinched the Atlantic Division title Saturday with a 4-2 win over the Washington Capitals.
Iginla scored twice to reach the 30-goal mark, and Patrice Bergeron added a goal as the Bruins won for the 14th time in 15 games. Chad Johnson made 31 saves, and he and Tuukka Rask have combined to allow only 13 goals over 11 games.
Jason Chimera and Evgeny Kuznetsov scored, and Braden Holtby stopped 32 shots for the Capitals, who were down 3-0 before they could find any traction against the possession-minded Bruins.
AVALANCHE 3, SHARKS 2
DENVER (AP)—Semyon Varlamov had a season-high 47 saves and Colorado clinched its first playoff berth in four years by beating San Jose.
Center John Mitchell had a goal and an assist for the Avalanche, who moved past Chicago into second place in the Central Division with 100 points in what might have been a costly victory.
Centre Matt Duchene injured his knee injury on the opening shift Saturday when he collided with teammate Jamie McGinn near the Sharks’ blue line. He fell to the ice and then gingerly skated to the bench.
Mitchell moved up to centre Colorado’s top line, and came through with a big power-play goal to give Colorado a 3-1 lead at 6:32 of the second period.
DUCKS 5, CANUCKS 1
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP)—Corey Perry and Saku Koivu each had a goal and an assist and Frederik Andersen made 31 saves to help Anaheim defeat Vancouver.
Luca Sbisa, Matt Beleskey and Mathieu Perreault also scored for Anaheim, while Andrew Cogliano and Daniel Winnik added two assists as the Ducks moved into first place in the Pacific Division.
Brad Richardson scored for Vancouver, which remained five points behind the Phoenix Coyotes for the final wild-card berth in the Western Conference. Eddie Lack made 16 saves.
WILD 3, COYOTES 1
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP)—Zach Parise scored two of Minnesota’s three third-period goals and the Wild rallied to beat Phoenix in a game with playoff implications.
Phoenix nursed a 1-0 through two periods on Mikkel Boedker’s early power-play goal, but the Coyotes went 24:28 without a shot.
Parise tied it from the top of the circle off a face off 8:03 into the final period, then Jared Spurgeon scored on a slap shot from the top of the right circle with 7:03 to play and Parise added an empty-net goal in the final minute.
The Wild pulled three points ahead of Phoenix for the No. 7 spot in the Western Conference. The Coyotes are just a point ahead of Dallas for the No. 8 spot.
RED WINGS 4, MAPLE LEAFS 2
TORONTO (AP)—Darren Helm had a hat trick and Detroit sent Toronto to its eighth consecutive regulation loss, the Maple Leafs’ first such streak since 1985.
The Maple Leafs have 80 points with just six games remaining and might have to run the table to give themselves a legitimate shot at a second straight playoff appearance.
They have two fewer games left than the Red Wings (82 points), the Columbus Blue Jackets (82 points) and the Washington Capitals (80 points) in the Eastern Conference.
Cody Franson and Joffrey Lupul scored for Toronto. Gustav Nyquist also had a goal for Detroit.
Jonathan Bernier, playing his third game back from a groin injury, stopped 24 of the 28 shots. Red Wings goaltender Jimmy Howard finished with 25 saves.
KINGS 4, JETS 2
LOS ANGELES (AP)—Anze Kopitar scored two goals in the first period, Jonathan Quick made 24 saves, and Los Angeles kept rolling toward the playoffs, beating Winnipeg for its sixth straight victory.
Trevor Lewis and Tyler Toffoli also scored for the Kings, who haven’t lost since March 17. Marian Gaborik and Willie Mitchell had two assists apiece as Los Angeles took a 3-0 lead in the first period and cruised to its 14th win in 17 games.
Matt Halischuk and Blake Wheeler scored in the third period for the Jets, who hadn’t visited Los Angeles since Jan. 3, 1996.
Ondrej Pavelec gave up three goals in the first period before getting pulled, and Al Montoya stopped 12 shots in the final 40 minutes.
BLUE JACKETS 3, HURRICANES 2, OT
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP)—Ryan Johansen scored a power-play goal at 2:40 of overtime and Columbus beat Carolina to earn two points in its push for the second playoff berth in club history and first since 2009.
Artem Anisimov had a goal and an assist and Matt Calvert also scored for the Blue Jackets
Jeff Skinner and Andrei Loktionov scored and Riley Nash had two assists for the Hurricanes, who fell to 6-11 since the Olympic break.
Curtis McElhinney made 25 saves for Columbus in his second straight start in place of flu-stricken starter Sergei Bobrovsky.
Brandon Dubinsky rang the left post midway through the extra session for the Blue Jackets. Goalie Anton Khudobin couldn’t cover the puck, but forward Jiri Tlusty did—drawing the Hurricanes’ first penalty of the night at 1:54.
Johansen then ended it with a snap shot that trickled past Khudobin.
STARS 4, BLUES 2
ST. LOUIS (AP)—Colton Sceviour got the first two goals for Dallas and Antoine Roussel scored on a breakaway in the third period to secure the victory over St. Louis.
Cody Eakin had a goal and assist and Kari Lehtonen was strong in net for the Stars, who have won four of five in pursuit of a Western Conference playoff spot.
Dallas entered the day three points out of a playoff spot before winning for the second straight night and saddling the Blues with just their sixth regulation home loss.
Alex Steen had a pair of power-play goals for the Blues, who had been 8-0-2 in their previous 10 at home including an overtime loss to Dallas earlier this month. St. Louis fell one point behind Boston for first place overall in the NHL.
ISLANDERS 2, DEVILS 1, SO
UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP)—Frans Nielsen scored in the second period and then added a goal in the shootout to lift New York over playoff-hopeful New Jersey.
Nielsen scored in the first round, and Brock Nelson added a goal in the second against New Jersey’s Cory Schneider to hand the Devils their 14th straight shootout loss—0-10 this season. Anders Nilsson turned aside Adam Henrique, who scored in regulation, and Patrik Elias to win it.
The Devils earned one point, but are still behind several teams in the Eastern Conference playoff race with eight games left. They are 2-4-2 in their last eight.
Nielsen gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead early in the second before Henrique tied it.
CANADIENS 4, PANTHERS 1
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP)—Max Pacioretty had two goals and an assist to help Montreal extend its winning streak to five games with the win over Florida.
Thomas Vanek added a goal and an assist for Montreal and Carey Price made 36 saves. David Desharnais had an empty-net goal.
Pacioretty’s second goal put the Canadiens ahead 3-0 in the second period. Pacioretty camped at edge of the crease and tipped in a pass from Desharnais at 14:00 for his 35th of the season, a career high. Pacioretty has 11 points in his past 10 games.
Brad Boyes scored for Florida and Dan Ellis stopped 15 shots for the Panthers, who have lost five of their past six games.
LIGHTNING 4, SABRES 3, OT
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP)—Steven Stamkos scored two goals, including the winner in overtime, and Tampa Bay beat Buffalo to remain two points behind Montreal for second place in the Atlantic Division.
Alex Killorn and Ryan Callahan also scored for the Lightning, who have earned at least a point in 11 consecutive games.
Matt D’Agostini, Cody Hodgson and Cory Conacher scored for Buffalo, which finished March with a 2-11-1 record.