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NHL roundup: Senators upset Bruins 3-1 in regular-season finale

BOSTON (AP) — Jiri Smejkal scored his first career goal midway through the second period and Jakob Chychrun scored again for Ottawa less than a minute later as the Senators beat the Boston Bruins 3-1 on Tuesday night in the regular-season finale for
Boston Bruins center Pavel Zacha (18) backhands a shot past Ottawa Senators goaltender Anton Forsberg (31) for a goal during the third period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, April 16, 2024, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

BOSTON (AP) — Jiri Smejkal scored his first career goal midway through the second period and Jakob Chychrun scored again for Ottawa less than a minute later as the Senators beat the Boston Bruins 3-1 on Tuesday night in the regular-season finale for both teams.

Artem Zub added an empty-net goal with 1:48 remaining and Anton Forsberg had 34 saves for the Senators, who avoided a three-game season sweep by Boston and spoiled the Bruins’ hopes of clinching the Atlantic Division.

The Bruins (47-20-15) led second-place Florida by a point entering Tuesday night's play. Boston blew back-to-back chances to clinch the division by getting shut out by Washington 2-0 on Monday, then a home loss to the Senators on Tuesday night. The Panthers beat the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs 5-2 to take top spot.

Pavel Zacha scored Boston’s only goal. Linus Ullmark finished with 17 saves for the Bruins.

Elsewhere in the NHL on Tuesday:



COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Zach Werenski had two goals and two assists, Jet Greaves made 38 saves and Columbus beat a diminished version of playoff-bound Carolina.

The Hurricanes, who finished second in the Metropolitan Division, rested eight regulars in the meaningless regular-season finale.

Carolina finished with 111 points at 52-23-7, the second-best record in the Eastern Conference behind the division champion New York Rangers. The Hurricanes reached the post-season for the sixth straight year.

At least it wasn’t another loss for last-place Columbus, which had another season marred by injuries that sidelined top players, including the two goaltenders. The Blue Jackets missed the playoffs for a fourth straight season.



PHILADELPHIA (AP) — T.J. Oshie scored into an empty net in the rare situation of a team pulling its goaltender in a tie game, and Washington is in the playoffs after beating Philadelphia.

Flyers coach John Tortorella pulled goalie Samuel Ersson for an extra attacker because his team needed to win in regulation to keep its post-season hopes alive. The result allowed the Capitals to clinch a berth and eliminate the Pittsburgh Penguins — rivals for both teams finishing the regular season in Philadelphia — in improbable fashion with Oshie’s goal with exactly three minutes left.

The surreal scene played out after the Flyers and Capitals slogged out much of the third period 5 on 5 — and perhaps a minute after Detroit went to overtime in Montreal, eliminating Philadelphia. Tortorella may not have known his team had no chance of winning when he sent Ersson to the bench and opened the net for Oshie.

Washington will face the Presidents’ Trophy-winning New York Rangers in the first round beginning this weekend, returning to the playoffs after a one-year absence ended their eight-year streak.



MONTREAL (AP) — Patrick Kane scored the shootout winner in a Detroit win over Montreal in their regular-season finale, but the Red Wings were eliminated from playoff contention.

The Red Wings entered the night tied with Washington for the East’s second wild-card spot with 89 points. The Capitals, however, held the tiebreaker over Detroit with more regulations wins and clinched the final playoff spot with a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday.

Detroit has missed the playoffs eight straight seasons.



SUNRISE, Fla. (AP)— Sam Bennett and Sam Reinhart scored 10 seconds apart midway through the second period, and Florida beat Toronto.

With the victory and Boston’s 3-1 loss to Ottawa, Florida clinched the Atlantic Division title. The Panthers (52-24-6) finished the season with a four-game win streak to make up a five-point deficit in the standings.

Carter Verhaeghe and Brandon Montour also scored for Florida, and Anthony Stolarz made 24 saves.

The Panthers will play the Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening round of the playoffs.

John Tavares and Noah Gregor scored for the Maple Leafs (46-25-10), and Joseph Woll made 37 stops.

Toronto is locked into the Atlantic Division’s third seed. It will play Boston in the first round of the playoffs.



WINNIPEG, Man. (AP) — Kyle Connor scored twice and Tyler Toffoli broke a third-period tie to lift Winnipeg to a key victory over Seattle.

The win clinched second place in the Central Division for the Jets and home-ice advantage in their first-round playoff series with the Colorado Avalanche.

Winnipeg (51-24-6) also stretched its win streak to seven in front of its eighth sold-out crowd of the season at Canada Life Centre.



LAS VEGAS (AP) — Brayden McNabb, Michael Amadio and Nicolas Roy scored, and Vegas moved into third place in the Pacific Division after defeating Chicago.

The Knights, who have won three consecutive games, are one point ahead of Los Angeles. If Vegas beats Anaheim on Thursday, the Knights will clinch that spot and face Edmonton in the first round of the playoffs. The Kings host the Blackhawks in their season finale on Thursday night.

Logan Thompson made 23 saves for Vegas. He was working on his second shutout of the season before Jason Dickinson scored for Chicago with 3:58 to go.


VANCOUVER, B.C. (AP) — Tyler Myers had a goal an assist, Thatcher Demko stopped 39 shots in his return from a knee injury and Vancouver beat Calgary to clinch the Pacific Division title.

Nils Hoglander, Dakota Joshua and J.T. Miller also scored to help Vancouver win a division for the first time since 2013. The Canucks are two points behind Dallas for the No. 1 spot in the Western Conference, and both teams have one game remaining.

Brayden Pachal scored for the Flames and Jacob Markstrom had 27 saves.

Demko missed 14 games since suffering an injury in Vancouver’s 5-0 win over Winnipeg on March 9.

The Associated Press