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NHL Short Notes

THREE HARD LAPS


* The Jets blanked the Flames and became the third Scotia North Division team to clinch a berth in the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Marc-Andre Fleury passed Roberto Luongo for sole possession of third place on the NHL’s all-time wins list, while Anze Kopitar had an assist to reach the 1,000-point milestone.

* The League-leading Hurricanes look to match their longest point streak in franchise history as the club continues to pursue its first-ever Presidents’ Trophy.


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Blake Wheeler (2-0—2) reached 800 career regular-season points and Connor Hellebuyck made 32 saves as the Jets (28-21-3, 59 points) blanked the Flames and became the third Scotia North Division team to clinch a berth in the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, following the Maple Leafs and Oilers. Winnipeg is headed to the postseason for the fourth straight year and sixth time in franchise history.



* Winnipeg’s four consecutive playoff appearances date to 2018, when the Jets earned their first two series wins in franchise history to reach the Conference Finals. Winnipeg fell to Vegas in five games that year.
 
* Wheeler is the all-time franchise leader in playoff assists and points. Wheeler (Plymouth, Minn.) can become the first player born outside Canada to captain one of the active Canadian NHL franchises to a Stanley Cup.
 
* Hellebuyck has accounted for all 12 of the club’s postseason wins, owning a career record of 12-15 in 27 playoff appearances (2.53 GAA, .917 SV%, 2 SO). He is the only goaltender to have the decision for every playoff victory by an active NHL franchise; two netminders did so for defunct clubs (Gary Smith w/ Oakland Seals/California Golden Seals/Cleveland Barons and Roy Worters w/ Pittsburgh Pirates/Philadelphia Quakers).

FLEURY CLIMBS ALL-TIME WINS LIST WITH GOLDEN KNIGHTS’ OVERTIME VICTORY
Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (26 saves) earned his 490th career regular-season win and surpassed Roberto Luongo (489) for sole possession of third place on the NHL’s all-time wins listMartin Brodeur and Patrick Roy rank first and second, respectively.



* Fleury made the 881st regular-season appearance of his NHL career. He required five fewer games than Brodeur (886 GP) and 37 fewer than Roy (918 GP) to reach 490 wins.
 

Alex Pietrangelo became the second defenseman in franchise history to score in extra time as the Honda West Division-leading Golden Knights (37-13-2, 76 points) concluded their eight-game season series with the Wild (VGK: 3-4-1, MIN: 5-1-2) and opened a four-point lead over the second-place Avalanche (34-13-4, 72 points).

HONDA WEST DIVISION CAPTAINS REACH MILESTONES

* Kings captain Anze Kopitar (0-1—1) improved his career totals to 346-654—1,000 in 1,124 regular-season games and became the eighth active NHL player to reach 1,000 points. Kopitar, who was selected 11th overall in 2005, became the second member of his NHL Draft class to reach the milestone behind first-overall pick Sidney Crosby (485-838—1,323 in 1,037 GP).


*Anaheim earned a 3-2 shootout win over St. Louis at Enterprise Center as Ryan Getzlaf became the first player to skate in 1,100 career games with the Ducks.

 * ICYMI: After the game, St. Louis players shook hands with Anaheim forward David Backes, who skated 10 of his 15 NHL seasons with the Blues (including five as team captain from 2011-12 – 2015-16).


 
VASILEVSKIY HELPS LIGHTNING MOVE INTO SECOND IN DISCOVER CENTRAL
Andrei Vasilevskiy made 20 saves as Tampa Bay (36-14-3, 75 points) improved to 6-1-0 against Dallas this season (DAL: 1-5-1) and moved past idle Florida (35-14-5, 75 points) for second place in the Discover Central Division. The Lightning became the first defending Stanley Cup champion to earn six-plus wins against their Final opponent during the ensuing regular season since 1966-67, when the Canadiens went 10-4-0 versus the Red Wings (DET: 4-10-0).

* Vasilevskiy, who leads the League in wins this season, improved to 31-8-1 in 40 appearances (2.10 GAA, .928 SV%, 5 SO).



OSHIE SCORES HAT TRICK IN FIRST GAME SINCE PASSING OF HIS FATHER
In the first game since the passing of his father, Tim “Coach” Oshie, an emotional T.J. Oshie scored his fourth career hat trick and first since March 18, 2017 to help the Capitals (34-14-5, 73 points) climb back into first place in the MassMutual East Division.



QUICK CLICKS
 
NHL names Jared M. Maples executive vice president, chief security officer
Flyers’ Shayne Gostisbehere suspended two games for boarding
Willie O'Ree deserves Congressional Gold Medal, Kenan Thompson says
Bobby Ryan not considering retiring, hopes to remain with Red Wings
Capitals honor T.J. Oshie's father with helmet sticker

LEAGUE-LEADING HURRICANES LOOK TO EXTEND POINT STREAK TO 13 GAMES
Carolina (36-10-7, 79 points), which has occupied first place in the NHL standings since April 29, is 9-0-3 in its last 12 games and will look to extend its point streak tonight. The highest seed that the Hurricanes/Whalers have held at the conclusion of a regular season was third, achieved in 2005-06 en route to winning the Stanley Cup.

* Carolina also had a lengthy streak around this time 15 years ago before claiming the championship. On May 6, 2006, the Hurricanes opened the Conference Semifinals with a 6-0 shutout over the Devils to earn their fifth straight victory – Carolina would extend the winning streak to seven contests, which remains the franchise’s longest during the postseason.
 



MATTHEWS LOOKS TO EXTEND GOAL STREAK AND SCORE No. 40 IN 2020-21

Auston Matthews (39-24—63 in 48 GP) enters tonight’s contest against the Canadiens with goals in each of his last four games and one shy of 40 in 2020-21. The Maple Leafs forward would become the only active player to reach the 40-goal mark prior to his 50th game of a season.

* Matthews (197-151—348 in 330 GP), who also sits three tallies shy of 200 in his career, would require the fewest games by any player to score 40 in a single season since Pavel Bure hit the mark in 48 contests with the Panthers during the 1999-00 campaign.

* After he posted a five- (April 4-12) and seven-game (Jan. 24 – Feb. 8) goal streak earlier in 2020-21, Matthews can join Babe Dye (3x in 1924-25) as just the second player in franchise history to record three such runs of five-plus games in a single season.

* Additionally, only four players in the last 20 years have accomplished the feat: Patrik Laine (3x in 2017-18 w/ WPG), Vincent Lecavalier (3x in 2006-07 w/ TBL), Dany Heatley (3x in 2006-07 w/ OTT) and Alex Ovechkin (3x in 2005-06 w/ WSH).

 

Thanks to the NHL PR department for the information above.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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