Nick Paul brace takes Game 7 for Lightning in Toronto as Canes, Oilers advance

By Sports Desk May 14, 2022

Nick Paul scored twice, including a stunning individual goal late in the second period, as the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 in Game 7 on Saturday.

The two-time defending Stanley Cup champions came from a goal down in the previous two games, and had to do it again on the road at the Scotiabank Arena after Thursday's overtime win to level the series.

Morgan Reilly scored for Toronto but Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped an eventual 29 shots to keep the Lightning in the game, before Paul's brace secured the series win.

The Leafs were condemned to their seventh consecutive playoff series loss, and have not made the second round since 2004. After the match, Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe commended the reigning champions on their series win.

"They [Tampa Bay] don’t get a lot of credit because you don’t really think of them this way, but we knew coming into this series that going into third periods down against this team was going to be a challenge," he said post-game.

"They are the number-one team in the NHL when it comes to limiting chances against when up a goal in the third period. All regular season, they were that.

"That is sort of the hallmark of their success. That is championship hockey. They didn’t give us a great deal in that third period tonight. Those are the things I take away - just how hard they defend and how they prioritise defending."

In Saturday's other results, the Carolina Hurricanes won their series-deciding game at home to the Boston Bruins 3-2, while the Edmonton Oilers claimed Game 7 against the Los Angeles Kings with a 2-0 win.

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    Calvin Pickard made 26 saves to earn his first NHL victory in nearly two years, and the Edmonton Oilers extended their winning streak to seven games with a 4-1 decision over the New Jersey Devils on Sunday.

    Connor McDavid and Evander Kane each had a goal and an assist to help Pickard to his first win since Jan. 28, 2022, while with the Detroit Red Wings. The 31-year-old journeyman goaltender spent last season in the minors before being called up by the Oilers in November.

    Edmonton is 9-3-0 since Kris Knoublach replaced Jay Woodcroft as head coach last month. The Oilers fired Woodcroft on Nov. 12 following a 3-9-1 start.

    Pickard stopped all 12 shots he faced through the first two periods as Edmonton built a 2-0 lead on Derek Ryan's first-period goal and a power-play tally from Evan Bouchard in the second, the defenseman's third goal in two games.

    McDavid stretched the margin to 3-0 when he scored off a feed from Kane 4:23 into the third period. Jesper Bratt answered for New Jersey 30 seconds later, but Pickard protected the two-goal margin until Kane's empty-net score with 3:08 left.

    Akira Schmid stopped 26 of 29 shots for the Devils, who had won three straight and six of seven coming in.


    Gustavsson posts shutout as Wild extend Kraken's slide

    The Seattle Kraken, meanwhile, have now lost eight consecutive games after a 3-0 defeat to the Minnesota Wild behind Filip Gustavsson's 24 saves.

    Minnesota got goals from Matt Boldy, Marco Rossi and Joel Eriksson Ek to snap a two-game losing streak and improve to 5-2-0 since John Hynes replaced Dean Evason as head coach on Nov. 27.

    Boldy put the Wild ahead 7:14 into the first period and Minnesota maintained a 1-0 lead until Rossi scored with 7:26 left in the third. Gustavsson then finished off his second shutout of the season, which Eriksson Ek capped with an empty-net goal with 3.9 seconds remaining.

    Joey Daccord stopped 23 of 25 shots for the Kraken. Seattle is now 0-6-2 since Nov. 24.


    Quick beats former team, helps Rangers to win over Kings

    Jonathan Quick came up with 25 saves to defeat his former team and help the New York Rangers get back on track with a 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings.

    The veteran goaltender improved to 8-0-1 this season by winning his first-ever matchup against the Kings, the team Quick spent 16 seasons with until being traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets in March. The 37-year-old is the franchise's all-time leader with 370 wins and was part of two Stanley Cup champion teams.

    Jonny Brodzinski had a goal and an assist and Vincent Trocheck added three assists as the Rangers ended their first two-game losing streak of the season.

    The Kings, meanwhile, have now dropped back-to-back away games after setting an NHL record with an 11-game road winning streak to start the season. Los Angeles was coming off a 3-2 overtime loss to the New York Islanders on Saturday.

    After a scoreless first period, the Rangers moved ahead on goals by Mika Zibanejad and Jimmy Vesey in the second.

    Phillip Danault's power-play goal 6:37 into the third brought Los Angeles within 2-1, but Brodzinski converted a power-play chance less than five minutes later before Will Cuylle's goal with 4:36 remaining put the Rangers up 4-1. 

    Pheonix Copley finished with 23 saves for the Kings.


  • NHL: Islanders rally for overtime win, end Kings' record 11-game road winning streak to open season NHL: Islanders rally for overtime win, end Kings' record 11-game road winning streak to open season

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    Pageau beat Cam Talbot on a breakaway for his first goal in 14 home games this season.

    Ilya Sorokin made 34 saves, with his best coming when he denied Adrian Kempe on a breakaway late in the third period.

    New York improved to 4-0-1 in its last five games and has recorded a point in 11 of its last 12 games (7-1-4).

    Kempe and Vladislav Gavrikov scored for Los Angeles, which had won three straight and eight of nine overall.


    Red Wings captain Larkin injured in loss

    Detroit Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin was injured on a hit from behind in the first period in a 5-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators.

    Larkin was face-down and motionless for about a minute after being cross-checked in the back of the head and neck by Ottawa’s Mathieu Joseph. He was eventually able to stand and was hunched over as he was assisted to the locker room.

    The team released a statement during the game that Larkin was being evaluated by the medical staff.

    Claude Giroux and Vladimir Tarasenko each had a goal and an assist for the Senators, who have won three of four following a three-game skid.

    Patrick Kane scored his first goal with the Red Wings in his second game since joining Detroit.


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    Charlie Lindgren turned aside 31 shots and the Washington Capitals scored three second-period goals I a 4-0 win over the New York Rangers to spoil former coach Peter Laviolette’s return.

    Sonny Milano scored in the first period and Anthony Mantha, Tom Wilson and Nicolas Aube-Kubel tallied in the second as Washington snapped a three-game skid.

    Laviolette spent three seasons with the Capitals before parting ways with the team in April and joining the Rangers two months later.

    New York has lost two straight for the first time this season.

  • NHL: Edmonton Oilers earn sixth straight win NHL: Edmonton Oilers earn sixth straight win

    Evan Bouchard's second goal of the game broke a tie early in the third period and sent the resurgent Edmonton Oilers to a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild on Friday.

    Edmonton won its sixth consecutive game and improved to 8-3-0 under Kris Knoublach, who replaced Jay Woodcroft as head coach on Nov. 12 after the Oilers got off to a 3-9-1 start.

    Bouchard added an assist and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had four assists to help the Oilers battle back twice from one-goal deficits. Stars Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl each contributed a goal and an assist to back 17 saves from Stuart Skinner.

    The Wild were outshot by a 40-20 margin but kept it close throughout behind 36 saves from Marc-Andre Fleury.

    After Draisaitl's power-play goal late in the second period forged a 3-3 tie, Bouchard also converted a power-play chance 1:32 into the third to put Edmonton in front.

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    McDavid answered just 40 seconds after Eriksson Ek's goal, but Minnesota regained the lead on Connor Dewar's one-timer with 8:02 left in the second.

    The Wild have now lost two straight after winning their first four games since John Hynes replaced Dean Evason as head coach on Nov. 28.

    Bobrovsky, Panthers extend Penguins' losing streak

    Sergei Bobrovsky made 26 saves and Eetu Luostarinen scored the deciding goal in the third period as the Florida Panthers came through with a 3-1 win over the slumping Pittsburgh Penguins.

    Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Aleksander Barkov also had goals to help the Panthers move to 4-1-1 over their last six games.

    Pittsburgh, meanwhile, has now lost four straight (0-2-2) after failing to hold on to a 1-0 lead provided by Reilly Smith's goal 8:05 into the second period.

    The Panthers drew even when Ekman-Larsson knocked in a rebound late in the second period, then took a 2-1 edge when Luostarinen sent a loose puck past Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry with 6:10 elapsed in the third.

    After Florida killed off a late Pittsburgh power play, Barkov sealed the victory with an empty-net goal with 27 seconds remaining.

    Jarry stopped 30 of 32 shots for the Penguins, who went 0 for 3 on the power play and have now gone 13 straight games without a man-advantage goal.

    Greaves stars in NHL debut as Blue Jackets top Blues

    Jet Greaves stopped 41 shots to win his first NHL game as the Columbus Blue Jackets pulled away for a 5-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues.

    Yegor Chinakhov had two of three Columbus goals in the third period to support an outstanding debut from Greaves, called up from the minors Thursday after the Blue Jackets placed regular goaltender Elvis Merzlikins on injured reserve.

    The 22-year-old rookie came up with 23 saves alone in the third period, during which Chinakhov scored twice in a span of under six minutes to stretch Columbus' lead to 4-1.

    Chinakhov also assisted on Kirill Marchenko's goal that put the Blue Jackets ahead just 1:42 in, though Robert Thomas tied it for St. Louis later in the first period with the first of his two goals.

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    Thomas scored again with 2:22 remaining to get St. Louis within 4-2, but Alexandre Texier's empty-net goal in the final seconds ended any Blues' comeback hopes.

    Columbus snapped a three-game losing streak, while the Blues have now dropped three of four. Hofer stopped 17 of 21 shots in defeat.


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