Hayes scores in OT, Flyers sweep home-and-home with Columbus

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Kevin Hayes scored 3:51 into overtime, and the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 on Thursday night to sweep the home-and-home series between Metropolitan Division contenders.

Philadelphia trailed 3-1 before Nicolas Aube-Kubel and Claude Giroux scored 1:26 apart in the second period. After a scoreless third, Hayes snapped a shot from the slot past Elvis Merzlikins for his 19th of the season.

The Flyers, who routed the Blue Jackets 5-1 on Tuesday, are in third place in the Metro with 75 points, five behind Pittsburgh and Washington. Columbus has dropped seven in a row, but it has the first wild-card spot, one point ahead of the New York Islanders and Carolina.

Travis Konecny had a goal and an assist for Philadelphia, which improved to 12-5-2 in its last 19 games dating to Jan. 7. Brian Elliott had 28 saves.

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Oliver Bjorkstrand and Nick Foligno each had a goal and an assist for Columbus. Stefan Matteau scored his first goal in more than four years, and Merzlikins had 29 saves.


WASHINGTON (AP) — Ben Chiarot scored his second of the game 58 seconds into 3-on-3 OT to win it for Montreal as Washington’s Alex Ovechkin scored his 699th career goal and closed in on another milestone.

Ovechkin fired up the crowd by scoring in seven minutes in and came close to reaching 700 goals on a bang-bang play in the third period. Instead, he’ll have to wait to become the eighth player in NHL history to get to 700 as Washington lost its third straight.

Washington has lost five of its past six games and seven of 10, falling out of first place in the Metropolitan Division. The Capitals are also 1-4-1 at home since the All-Star break.

Goaltender Braden Holtby allowed goals to Shea Weber, Brendan Gallagher and two to Chiarot on 32 shots.

Also scoring for Washington were Lars Eller and Tom Wilson, who forced the overtime with a goal with 20.1 seconds left.


ST. LOUIS (AP) — Ryan O’Reilly scored and Jordan Binnington made 14 saves to lead St. Louis past Arizona.

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Binnington recorded his second consecutive shutout and the eighth of his career. He had allowed at least three goals in eight straight starts prior to his shutout performances.

Antti Raanta stopped 45 of the Blues’ season-high 46 shots on goal and fell to 13-14-13.


TORONTO (AP) — Jake Muzzin had a goal and two assists, Frederik Andersen made 24 saves and Toronto dealt Pittsburgh its most lopsided loss of the season.

Toronto had dropped three of its last four, including a 5-2 loss at Pittsburgh on Tuesday. It was Andersen’s second shutout of the season and No. 18 for his career.

William Nylander, Kasperi Kapanen and Zach Hyman also scored for Toronto. John Tavares added two assists.

Matt Murray made 26 stops for Pittsburgh.


OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) — Mark Scheifele snapped a 12-game scoring drought with three power-play goals, helping Winnipeg beat Ottawa.

Kyle Connor and Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for the Jets, who improved to 7-2-1 over their last 10 and moved into the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference. Laurent Brossoit made 29 saves for his sixth win of the season.

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Nick Paul scored for the Senators. Marcus Hogberg stopped 29 shots.


NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Mackenzie Blackwood made 36 saves in winning his fifth straight start and New Jersey beat San Jose in a matchup of struggling franchises.

Defenceman P.K. Subban scored the winner on a power play early in the third period. Jesper Bratt had the other New Jersey goal. Nikita Gusev had assists on both.

Defenceman Tim Heed scored for San Jose in the opener of its four-game trip. Martin Jones had 23 saves.


LAS VEGAS (AP) — Alec Martinez had a goal and an assist in his Vegas debut, and the Golden Knights stopped Tampa Bay’s 11-game win streak.

Martinez, acquired in a trade with Los Angeles on Wednesday, tied the game late in the first period. It was Martinez’s second goal of the season; he also scored at Vegas on Jan. 9.

Paul Stastny, Mark Stone, Ryan Reaves and Max Pacioretty also scored for the Golden Knights. Marc-Andre Fleury made 24 saves while improving to 21-13-4 against Tampa Bay.

Vegas earned its fourth straight win and improved to 8-3-2 under coach Pete DeBoer, who took over for the fired Gerard Gallant on Jan. 15. The win pushed the Golden Knights into first place in the Pacific Division, one point ahead of Edmonton.

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Steven Stamkos had two goals for Tampa Bay, and Kevin Shattenkirk also scored.


LOS ANGELES (AP) — Gabriel Vilardi had a goal and an assist in his NHL debut and Los Angeles opened a five-game homestand with a win over Florida.

Vilardi, who was the 11th overall pick in the 2017 draft, scored the fastest rookie debut goal in Kings history when he fired a wrist shot past Florida’s Sergei Bobrovsky 86 seconds into the game.

Drew Doughty, Trevor Moore, Martin Frk and Ben Hutton also scored for Los Angeles. Jonathan Quick made 25 saves as the Kings snapped a three-game losing streak to Florida.

Aleksander Barkov had two goals, and Jonathan Huberdeau (three assists) and Mike Hoffman also scored for Florida. Bobrovsky finished with 35 saves.


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