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NHL playoff roundup

Briere boosts Flyers

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Associated Press / May 1, 2008

Benching goalie Carey Price couldn't spark Montreal. Now Danny Briere and the Flyers are one win from ending the Canadiens' season.

Briere scored the winner on a rebound with 3:38 left to lift host Philadelphia to a 4-2 win over the Canadiens last night and a 3-1 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

The Flyers, the worst team in the NHL last season, can eliminate the top-seeded Canadiens in Game 5 Saturday night in Montreal.

"This is far from over, we have to realize it," Briere said. "I know they are not going to quit."

The Canadiens gave Philadelphia a scare when Tomas Plekanec and Saku Koviu tied the score at 2 on goals 37 seconds apart late in the third period.

Plekanec spoiled the shutout with a deflection into the net and Koivu knocked in a rebound that tied the score.

Briere's eighth goal of the postseason was enough to send the Flyers to Montreal with a chance to win the series.

"We have to find a way to get it done," Briere said. "We have to go in there with a mind-set that it's Game 7."

R.J. Umberger scored into an empty net in the final seconds, his second goal of the game.

Martin Biron was strong again in goal for the Flyers except for that one minute in the third period.

While the Canadiens can't settle on a No. 1 goaltender, Biron proved again he's capable of carrying the Flyers into May - and possibly beyond.

"When things are going good, people want to give you flowers," Biron said. "When things are going bad, heads up. The vase is coming."

Sharks 2, Stars 1 - Back to the Shark Tank.

Milan Michalek scored San Jose's first power-play goal of the series with 16:34 left and San Jose beat host Dallas to avoid being swept in the Western Conference semifinals.

The Sharks were 0 for 4 on power plays in Game 4 before getting another chance early in the third period when Mike Modano drew a delay of game penalty for knocking a puck into the stands. Brian Campbell made a cross-ice pass to Joe Thornton, who then pushed the puck back to the front of the net, between the legs of Jonathan Cheechoo and onto Michalek's stick.

Sharks captain Patrick Marleau had tied the score with another shorthanded goal, getting one after a turnover by Sergei Zubov for the second straight game.

Game 5 is tomorrow night in San Jose, where the Stars won the first two games of the series. The visiting team has won 14 of the past 18 games between the Pacific Division rivals, dating to last season.

The Stars missed a chance for their first postseason series sweep since 1999, when they swept Edmonton in the first round and went on to win the Stanley Cup.

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