While six playoff-bound teams wins during a busy NHL Sunday, that wasn’t the biggest news, however. One of the game’s elite players was knocked out of a game and his status for the playoffs is in limbo.
Winning team had at least five goals in seven of the 11 contests, with eight games featuring at least seven goals.
Alexander Kerfoot scored in the seventh round of the shootout. lifting the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs to a 4-3 win over the Washington Capitals in one of two games between playoff-bound teams. That won’t damage the Caps’ place in the standings. The injury to 50-goal scorer Alexander Ovechkin could be a huge blow, however..
Ovechkin tripped over the stick of Toronto goaltender Erik Kallgren early in the third period, then crashed into the boards. Ovechkin left with an upper-body injury and did not return. Washington coach Peter Laviolette didn’t provide additional information, on Ovechkin’s status when he met with the media after the game.
Alex Ovechkin will not return to tonight’s game after falling awkwardly into the boards. pic.twitter.com/KaWf8Jorg5
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) April 25, 2022
Ilya Mikheyev had a goal and an assist and Auston Matthews added two assists for Toronto, while Lars Eller, Marcus Johansson and T.J. Oshie scored for Washington.
The Capitals (+3000) already have the longest odds to win the Stanley Cup title among the eight playoff teams coming out of the Eastern Conference.
The Vegas Golden Knights suffered a costly loss in their fading quest to secure a playoff spot, 5-4 (shootout) to the visiting San Jose Sharks.
Vegas was ahead, 3-1, on goals by Chandler Stephenson, Max Pacioretty and William Carrier. However, Nick Bonino scored twice to help San Jose snap an 11-game losing streak against the Knights.
Bonino and Timo Meier scored in the final 2:06 of regulation, while Thomas Bordeleau had the deciding goal in,the shootout. Vegas’ failure to secure two points leaves the Golden Knights three points out of a playoff spot with three games left to play.
The only other game requiring overtime saw the visiting Minnesota Wild edge the Nashville Predators, 5-4. Dmitry Kulikov scored with 1.3 seconds remaining in OT as the Wild remained tied with the St. Louis Blues for second place in the Central Division.
Dante Fabbro scored with 5:40 left in the third period for Nashville, sending the game into overtime and allowing the Predators, holding down the first wild-card spot, to gain a point. Fabbro had an assist in the game, Filip Forsberg (goal and two assists) has two goals and six assists in the last five games.
Nikita Kucherov had two goals and three assists, leading the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning to an 8-4 win over the Florida Panthers. The four-goal victory had a Las Vegas odds moneyline of +1600.
Steven Stamkos had two goals and two assists, Nick Paul also scored twice and Victor Hedman added four assists for the Lightning. Those who bet online might be interested to know that the Lightning have scored at least six goals-winning by at least four goals-in each of their last three games.
Sam Reinhart scored twice for Florida, which saw its franchise-record 13-game winning streak end Sunday. It was Florida’s first loss at home since Feb. 26th. Florida still leads Colorado by four points in the race atop the standings. The Panthers, who have home-ice advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs, finished the regular season with an NHL-best 34 wins at home.
“We knew the streak they were on,” Paul said. “We wanted to come here and be the ones that ended it.”
Florida gave up three power-play goals and had 66 penalty minutes in the game.
Guy Lafleur was remembered with an emotional pregame tribute, then the visiting Boston Bruins handled the Montreal Canadiens, 5-3. With the win, the Bruins kept alive a shot at a third-place finish in the Atlantic Division.
Patrice Bergeron and Erik Haula each scored twice for Boston. Bergeron, who didn’t have a point in his previous six games, passed Ray Bourque and into fourth place on Boston’s career goal-scoring charts. Bergeron now has 396 goals, six shy of third-place Rick Middleton.
Josh Anderson, Nick Suzuki and Mike Hoffman scored for Montreal, which cut a three-goal Boston lead to one in the third period,
“It was an emotional night in Guy’s honor,” Montreal interim head coach Martin St. Louis said. “Like I told my players, you play so many games in the league and you might remember a few regular-season games but you will remember that one.”
The Montreal Canadiens pay tribute to Guy Lafleur at The Bell Centre. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/E588sEqCVu
— TSN (@TSN_Sports) April 24, 2022
The St. Louis Blues remained tied with Minnesota for second place in the Central Division after a 6-3 road win over the Anaheim Ducks.
Six St. Louis players had at least two points, led by Ivan Barbashev’s goal and two assists, as the Blues registered at least one point in their 16th game (14-0-2) in a row.
Pavel Buchnevich, Jordan Kyrou, Vladimir Tarasenko and Justin Faulk each had a goal and an assist, while Niko Mikkola had two assists.
Ryan Getzlaf had an assist in his final game, as he’s retiring after spending his entire 17-year career with Anaheim.
Max Comtois, Adam Henrique and Gerry Mayhew scored the goals for Anaheim.
Pyotr Kochetkov stopped seven of eight shots he saw, leading the Carolina Hurricanes to a 5-2 win on the road against the New York Islanders.
Max Domi scored his second goal in 17 games since being acquired by the Hurricanes to put Carolina ahead early in the third period. Jesper Fast and Brendan Smith added insurance goals to give Carolina a four-point lead over the New York Rangers atop the Metropolitan Division standings.
Ross Johnston and Ryan Pulock scored for the Islanders.
Kochetkov came on in relief of an injured Antti Raanta, Carolina’s without goalie Frederik Andersen as well.
Adam Lowry and Blake Wheeler scored in a span of 1:19 of the third period, lifting the Winnipeg Jets to a 4-1 win over the Western Conference-leading Colorado Avalanche.
Kyle Connor scored his 45th goal of the season, while Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for Winnipeg. Connor Hellebuyck had 30 saves, earning the win on a night he set the franchise record (380) for game played by a goaltender.
J.T. Compher scored for Colorado, which lost a season-high four games in a row.
Nick Blankenburg scored his first NHL goal as the Columbus Blue Jackets rolled past the visiting Edmonton Oilers, 5-2. The margin of win by Columbus carried an NHL betting lines payout of +1200.
Blankenburg also had an assist for the Blue Jackets. Oliver Bjorkstrand, who didn’t have a point in his previous 11 games, led Columbus with a goal and an assist. Cole Sillinger added a goal and an assist.
Connor McDavid had two assists, while Leon Draisaitl and Evander Kane had the goals for Edmonton. It denied Edmontonu a chance to reach the 100-point plateau. The loss also kept the Oilers from clinching second place in the Pacific Division.
Alex Nedeljkovic had 17 saves as the visiting Detroit Red Wings blanked the New Jersey Devils, 3-0.
Oskar Sundqvist and Tyler Bertuzzi each had a goal and an assist in a game featuring just 41 shots on goal.
Noah Cates had two goals and an assist as the Philadelphia Flyers defeated the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-1.
Martin Jones made 37 saves, Morgan Frost had a goal and an assist and Travis Konecny added an empty-net goal for Philly, winning back-to-back games for the first time since March 5th and 8th.
Sidney Crosby had the lone goal for Pittsburgh, which is a point ahead of Washington in the race for third in the Metropolitan.