Ville Leino scored in the sixth round of the shootout and the Philadelphia Flyers clinched a playoff spot with a 3-2 victory over the Stars last night in Dallas.
Claude Giroux had a goal in the second round for the Flyers, but Mike Ribeiro tied it for Dallas in the third with a nifty hesitation move.
Jeff Carter and Mike Richards scored in regulation and Sergei Bobrovsky made 28 saves for the Flyers. Philadelphia, with 96 points, broke a tie with the Capitals atop the Eastern Conference.
Philadelphia went 2-0-1 on its road trip and will return home to meet the Capitals Tuesday night.
Defensemen Alex Goligoski and Stephane Robidas scored in regulation and Kari Lehtonen stopped 28 shots for the Stars, 2-2-2 in a season-high, seven-game homestand.
Dallas rallied from a two-goal deficit to tie it at 2 at 15:24 of the third period when Robidas skated into the Flyers zone and scored with a slap shot from the slot.
Predators 3, Red Wings 1 — Jonathon Blum scored a power-play goal at 8:12 of the third period, and host Nashville beat Detroit for its fourth victory in five games.
Fellow rookie Blake Geoffrion also scored and David Legwand had an empty-net goal with 28.4 seconds left. Patric Hornqvist had two assists for Nashville, which moved back into eighth place in the tightly bunched Western Conference.
Dan Cleary scored for the Red Wings, who had a four-game winning streak snapped.
Sabres 8, Thrashers 2 — Nathan Gerbe and Tyler Ennis scored 1:50 apart in the second period and host Buffalo opened ground in the tight Eastern Conference playoff race with a rout of Atlanta.
Rob Niedermayer scored twice and Ryan Miller (30-21-7) made 28 saves — and stopped Evander Kane’s penalty shot — to become the eighth NHL goalie with six consecutive 30-win seasons. Mark Mancari had a goal and two assists, and Tyler Myers had three assists for eighth-place Buffalo, which moved two points ahead of idle Carolina.
Alexander Burmistrov and Chris Thorburn scored for the Thrashers, who dropped six points behind the Sabres with three weeks left in the season.
Tim Connolly and Jason Pominville added a goal and an assist each, and Brad Boyes also scored for the Sabres.
Senators 3, Lightning 2 — Jason Spezza scored on a breakaway 3:28 into overtime and Curtis McElhinney stopped 34 shots as host Ottawa rallied from a 2-0 deficit to beat Tampa Bay.
Ryan Shannon’s shorthanded goal 12:27 into the third spoiled Dwayne Roloson’s shutout bid and drew Ottawa within 2-1. Nick Foligno tied it with his 12th goal at 16:05.
Spezza lost control of the puck on a breakaway but it trickled past Roloson (31 saves) for the winner.
Islanders 4, Panthers 3 — Frans Nielsen and P.A. Parenteau scored in the shootout and Rick DiPietro had 28 saves in his first game in six weeks to lift visiting New York.
Sergei Samsonov and Mike Santorelli were both stopped in the tiebreaker by Rick DiPietro.
Micheal Haley, Michael Grabner, and Parenteau scored in regulation as the Islanders snapped a six-game skid on the road.
Ducks 2, Kings 1 — Corey Perry scored his 37th goal 1:32 into overtime, Ray Emery made 31 saves in his second straight victory, and Anaheim beat host Los Angeles in the 100th Freeway Faceoff.
The Ducks pulled into a ninth-place tie with Calgary in the Western Conference with 73 points. The clubs meet at
Blue Jackets 5, Wild 4 — Antoine Vermette scored the winning goal with 33.5 seconds left in overtime, lifting Columbus past Minnesota at St. Paul.
Rick Nash broke out of a slump with two goals and two assists, his first goals since Feb. 22, a span of 11 games that matched his career-high drought.
Sharks 5, Blues 3 — Joe Pavelski notched a hat trick, Antti Niemi stopped 42 shots, and host San Jose jumped to a 5-1 lead after two periods and cruised past St. Louis.
Avalanche 3, Oilers 2 — Ryan Stoa beat Nikolai Khabibulin with a backhander from 10 feet in the fourth round of the shootout to lift visiting Colorado.