TORONTO – James Reimer made 31 saves, and Phil Kessel snapped a scoreless tie late in the third period to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 2-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Monday night, despite recording only 12 shots.
Kessel broke the deadlock with a power-play goal at 13:28 of the third, and Jay McClement scored into an empty net with 36.6 seconds remaining to back Reimer’s third shutout of the season.
Toronto (24-14-5), aiming for its first post-season berth since 2004, is 9-1-4 in its past 14 games.
The Devils (15-17-10) lost for the 10th straight time (0-6-4) and were blanked for a second consecutive game. New Jersey, the defending Eastern Conference champion, is in 11th place—six points below the post-season cutoff with only six games left.
FLYERS 7, CANADIENS 3
MONTREAL (AP)—Scott Hartnell scored three goals and Philadelphia snapped a four-game losing streak with a victory over Montreal.
Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek each had a goal and two assists, and Wayne Simmonds and Erik Gustafsson also scored for the Flyers (18-21-3), who matched their season high for goals as they try to make a late push for a playoff spot.
Philadelphia is in 12th place in the Eastern Conference, four places and seven points behind the New York Rangers and the post-season cutoff. The Flyers have six games remaining.
Max Pacioretty, Brendan Gallagher and Alex Galchenyuk scored for the Canadiens (26-10-5), who were coming off a 5-1 loss in Toronto. They have had two lopsided losses since clinching a playoff spot on Thursday.
The Flyers outshot Montreal 33-28. Carey Price was pulled for a second game in a row in favour of Peter Budaj. Price left at the end of the second period after allowing six goals on 29 shots.
Montreal’s Ryan White was ejected in the first period for a direct hit to the head of defenceman Kent Huskins.
BLACKHAWKS 5, STARS 2
CHICAGO (AP)—Chicago’s Andrew Shaw, Niklas Hjalmarsson and Marian Hossa scored in the third period after Dallas rallied to tie it, and the Blackhawks went on to beat the Stars for their sixth straight win.
Jonathan Toews netted his team-leading 21st goal, and Viktor Stalberg also scored for NHL-leading Chicago, which has points in nine consecutive games (8-0-1). Ray Emery made 16 saves and improved to 16-1.
Jamie Benn scored both goals for the Stars, whose five-game winning streak ended. They got even after falling behind 2-0. Richard Bachman made 23 saves in his third straight start in place of No. 1 goalie Kari Lehtonen, who is out because of a lower body injury.
Bachman has been in goal since relieving Lehtonen in the first period of the Stars’ 5-1 win over Los Angeles on Tuesday.
The Stars remained in ninth place in the Western Conference, two points below the post-season cutoff with six games remaining.
CANUCKS 5, PREDATORS 2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)—Ryan Kesler scored two goals and Roberto Luongo made 36 saves to lead Vancouver over Nashville.
Derek Roy, Jason Garrison, and Alex Burrows also scored for Vancouver, which has won five of six. Daniel Sedin, Henrik Sedin, and Jannik Hansen each had a pair of assists.
Nick Spaling and Bobby Butler scored for the Predators, who were eliminated from post-season contention with their franchise-record seventh straight loss and 10th in 11 games. They had qualified for the playoffs in seven of eight years.
BLUE JACKETS 4, AVALANCHE 3, OT
DENVER (AP)—Nick Foligno scored at 4:31 of overtime, Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 29 shots, and Columbus beat Colorado for its fourth straight win.
Blake Comeau, Mark Letestu and R.J. Umberger also added goals to help the Blue Jackets remain in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race. They pulled even in points (47) with Detroit for eighth place.
Cody McLeod scored twice and Jamie McGinn added another goal for the Avalanche, who are last in the West.
Foligno skated in on the right side of Jean-Sebastien Giguere and sent a wrist shot by the veteran goalie.
WILD 4, FLAMES 3
CALGARY, Alberta (AP)—Jason Pominville scored twice to help Minnesota beat Calgary and snap a three-game losing streak (0-2-1).
Pominville has four goals in six games since being acquired from Buffalo at the NHL trade deadline.
Mikko Koivu and Pierre-Marc Bouchard also scored for Minnesota, which began a three-game trip. The Wild moved past St. Louis into sixth place in the Western Conference and three points behind Northwest Division-leading Vancouver.
Jiri Hudler, Sven Baertschi and Ben Hanowski—making his NHL debut—scored for Calgary.
SHARKS 4, COYOTES 0
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP)—Antti Niemi stopped 35 shots for his fourth shutout of the season, Tommy Wingels had a goal and an assist, and San Jose earned a key road victory by racing past Phoenix.
The Sharks overwhelmed Phoenix in the second period to move within a point of Los Angeles for fourth place in the Western Conference.
San Jose outshot Phoenix 24-7 in the period, going up 3-0 on goals by Wingels, Logan Couture and Joe Pavelski.
Niemi made some tough saves early and was steady after the Sharks took the lead to earn his 23rd career NHL shutout, and Matt Irwin scored a late power-play goal.
Jason LaBarbera stopped 37 shots for Phoenix, which remained 11th in the West and four points out of the final playoff spot with six games left.
The Coyotes had earned a point in eight of their previous nine games (5-1-3), but were still 11th.