Hockey Today March 29

Hockey Today March 29

Hockey Today

Montreal at Toronto (7 p.m. EDT). The Canadiens are headed to the playoffs and the Maple Leafs, who have won four of the six meetings this season, are not.

STARS


-Dan Ellis, Predators, made a career-high 43 saves to lead Nashville to a 2-0 win over Columbus.

-Joe Sakic, Avalanche, forced overtime by scoring with 5.9 seconds left in regulation, and then added the decisive tally in a shootout and Colorado stunned Edmonton 5-4.

-Tomas Plekanec and Christopher Higgins, Canadiens. Plekanec scored consecutive goals in the final three minutes of regulation and Higgins tallied 3:38 into overtime and Montreal rallied for a 4-3 win at Buffalo.

-Tuomo Ruutu and Jeff Hamilton, Hurricanes, each scored two of Carolina's five power-play goals in a 7-1 rout of Atlanta.

-Brad Boyes, Blues, scored his second goal of the game and 40th of the season 2:43 into overtime to give St. Louis a 4-3 win at Detroit.

PACIFIC PARADISE

San Jose wrapped up its third Pacific Division title and first since 2003-04 with Friday night's 3-1 victory over Anaheim. The Sharks, who have points in 18 straight games (16-0-2), snapped the Ducks' 10-game home winning streak while improving their NHL-best road mark to 27-8-4.

RUDE HOSTS

New Jersey extended its home winning streak over Philadelphia to 12 games and snapped a five-game losing drought after posting a 5-4 shootout win on Friday night. The Flyers haven't won in New Jersey since March 9, 2004. The Devils own the second-longest current home winning streak against one team. Carolina has won 13 straight against Florida.

THRASHING THE THRASHERS

Carolina improved to 6-1-1 against Atlanta this season and moved closer to clinching the Southeast Division title with Friday night's 7-1 victory. The Hurricanes, who increased their lead in the division to four points over Washington, scored at least five goals in all but one of those victories.

BLANKETY, BLANK

Dan Ellis shut out Columbus for the second time in four days Friday night, stopping a career-high 43 shots in Nashville's 2-0 win. Ellis' 36-save performance backstopped the Predators to a 3-0 victory on Tuesday. Nashville is 15-0-1 in its past 16 meetings with the Blue Jackets, matching the longest current points streak for one team against another. That's 31 of a possible 32 points head-to-head the past two seasons.

NOT-SO-GREAT EIGHT

Vancouver lost its fourth straight game and slipped into an eighth-place tie with Nashville in the Western Conference after a 4-0 loss to Minnesota on Friday night. The Predators beat Columbus 2-0 on Friday and hold the tiebreaker over the Canucks because of one more victory.

SLIPPING SABRES

Buffalo blew a 3-1, third-period lead for the second straight home game Friday night, allowing Montreal to score twice in the final 2:31 and again 3:38 into overtime for a 4-3 loss. The Sabres also surrendered a 3-1 third-period lead in a 6-3 loss to Ottawa on Tuesday. Stuck in 10th place, Buffalo is four points back of eighth-place Boston and the postseason cutoff in the East.

RED-HOT WING

Johan Franzen scored twice in Detroit's 4-3 overtime loss to St. Louis on Friday night, giving him 13 goals and four assists in 12 games.

ANOTHER SUIT

Former Vancouver coach Marc Crawford has been named in a lawsuit over Todd Bertuzzi's infamous attack on Steve Moore. Crawford, who now coaches Los Angeles, could be liable for millions if a judge decides Moore deserves compensation for his injury. Bertuzzi, who now plays for Anaheim, alleges Crawford urged him and his teammates during a March 2004 game against Colorado ``to make (Moore) 'pay the price' `` for a hit against Canucks captain Markus Naslund two weeks earlier. Bertuzzi sought to have Crawford included, saying his NHL contract compelled him to take orders from his coach.

TORTORELLA TABBED

Tampa Bay coach John Tortorella will coach Team USA in the world championships in May in Quebec and Nova Scotia. Tortorella's only other coaching stint with the U.S. program came when he served as associate coach of the 2005 team that played in the world championships in Austria.

SPEAKING

``We're very confident with him the last couple of games. Over 40 shots and two shutouts - it's just unbelievable.'' - Nashville's Radek Bonk on goalie Dan Ellis, who shut out Columbus for the second time in four days after making a career-high 43 saves in a 2-0 win on Friday night. Ellis stopped 36 shots in a 3-0 victory on Tuesday.

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Re: Hockey Today March 29

Ottawa Senators vs. Boston Bruins

- The Ottawa Senators and the Boston Bruins will both be trying to pick up a win on Saturday when they battle at TD Banknorth Garden.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Senators were upset 4-3 in a shootout by the Sabres last time out, as -155 favorites at home. The combined score was a PUSH against the posted over/under (6.5).

Mike Fisher scored twice for the Senators, and Jason Spezza had the other marker in the loss. Martin Gerber kept the Sens in the game with a 37 save performance.

The Bruins doubled the Maple Leafs 4-2 on Thursday, and eliminated them from playoff contention. The Bruins won that game as -140 favorites, and the six goals made it OVER the posted over/under (5.5).

Marco Sturm, Phil Kessel, Glen Murray and Peter Schaefer scored for the Bruins. Tim Thomas made 30 saves for the win.

Current streak:
Boston has won 2 straight games.

Team records:
Ottawa: 42-28-8
Boston: 39-28-10

Ottawa most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 7-3
Before playing Boston are 7-3
After playing Buffalo are 4-6
After a loss are 5-5

Boston most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 4-6
Before playing Ottawa are 5-5
After playing Toronto are 8-2
After a win are 6-4

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Ottawa's last 5 games when playing Boston
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Ottawa's last 5 games
Ottawa is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Boston
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Ottawa's last 5 games when playing on the road against Boston
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Boston's last 5 games when playing Ottawa
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Boston's last 5 games when playing at home against Ottawa
The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Boston's last 10 games
Boston is 4-9 SU in its last 13 games

Next up:
Ottawa home to Montreal, Tuesday, April 1
Boston at Buffalo, Sunday, March 30

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Re: Hockey Today March 29

Dallas Stars vs. Los Angeles Kings

- If familiarity breeds contempt, there should be animosity aplenty on Saturday when the Dallas Stars and the Los Angeles Kings meet at STAPLES Center.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Stars fell 3-2 to the Sharks in overtime on Thursday, as a +125 road underdog. The five goals went as a PUSH against the posted over/under (5).

Brenden Morrow and Jere Lehtinen scored for the Stars, and Marty Turco stopped 24 shots in the loss.

Erik Ersberg stopped all 38 shots for the shutout, as the Kings defeated the Coyotes 4-0. The Kings won the game as -120 favorites, but the four goals were UNDER the posted over/under (5.5).

Anze Kopitar had a goal and two assists, while Kevin Dallman, Dustin Brown and Rob Blake scored in the win.

Current streak:
Dallas has lost 5 straight games.

Team records:
Dallas: 42-29-6
Los Angeles: 31-40-7

Dallas most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 7-2-1
Before playing Los Angeles are 5-5
After playing San Jose are 4-6
After a loss are 4-6

Los Angeles most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 3-7
Before playing Dallas are 4-6
After playing Phoenix are 8-2
After a win are 2-8

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Dallas's last 5 games when playing on the road against Los Angeles
Dallas is 11-4 SU in its last 15 games when playing Los Angeles
Dallas is 8-4 SU in its last 12 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 6 of Dallas's last 9 games when playing Los Angeles
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Los Angeles's last 5 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Los Angeles's last 5 games when playing at home against Dallas
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Los Angeles's last 8 games
Los Angeles is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing Dallas

Next up:
Dallas at Anaheim, Sunday, March 30
Los Angeles at San Jose, Tuesday, April 1

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Washington Capitals vs. Florida Panthers

- Divisional bragging rights will be on the line on Saturday when the Washington Capitals and the Florida Panthers meet at BankAtlantic Center.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Tomas Fleischmann scored at 2:27 of overtime for the Capitals in Thursday's 4-3 OT win over the Lightning, as -145 favorites. The seven goals made it OVER the posted over/under (5.5).

Brooks Laich, Matt Bradley and Alexander Semin scored in regulation for the Capitals. Cristobal Huet made 23 saves in the win.

The Panthers were upset 3-2 by the Thrashers last time out, as -240 favorites. The five goals fell UNDER the posted over/under (5.5).

Nathan Horton and Radek Dvorak scored in the loss.

Current streak:
Washington has won 3 straight games.
Florida has lost 2 straight games.

Team records:
Washington: 39-31-8
Florida: 36-33-9

Washington most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 7-3
Before playing Calgary are 4-6
After playing Tampa Bay are 1-9
After a win are 7-3

Florida most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 3-3-4
Before playing NY Rangers are 6-4
After playing Atlanta are 5-5
After a loss are 4-6

A few trends to consider:
Washington is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games
Washington is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Washington's last 11 games when playing on the road against Florida
The total has gone UNDER in 16 of Washington's last 23 games
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Florida's last 6 games
Florida is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Washington
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Florida's last 5 games at home
Florida is 9-3 SU in its last 12 games when playing Washington

Next up:
Washington home to Carolina, Tuesday, April 1
Florida at Atlanta, Tuesday, April 1

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Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs

- The Montreal Canadiens and the Toronto Maple Leafs will meet on the ice at Air Canada Centre on Saturday in a battle of division rivals.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Chris Higgins scored the winner in overtime to lift the Canadiens to a 4-3 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Friday night.

Montreal won as -115 road favorites as the teams played over the 6-goal total listed by oddsmakers.

The Maple Leafs were eliminated from playoff contention with a 4-2 loss on Thursday to the Bruins. Oddsmakers listed the Maple Leafs as +120 underdogs on the road, while the six goals made it OVER the posted over/under (5.5).

Jiri Tlusty and Pavel Kubina tallied for the Leafs. Vesa Toskala stopped 29-of-33 shots in the loss.

Current streak:
Montreal has won 4 straight games.
Toronto has lost 2 straight games.

Team records:
Montreal: 44-24-10
Toronto: 35-33-10

Montreal most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 5-4-1
Before playing Ottawa are 8-2
After playing Buffalo are 7-3
After a win are 6-4

Toronto most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 3-7
Before playing San Jose are 3-3-2
After playing Boston are 5-5
After a loss are 8-2

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone OVER in 7 of Montreal's last 8 games on the road
Montreal is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
Montreal is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Montreal's last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Toronto's last 5 games when playing at home against Montreal
Toronto is 17-7-1 SU in its last 25 games when playing at home against Montreal
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Toronto's last 6 games
Toronto is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games at home

Next up:
Montreal at Ottawa, Tuesday, April 1
Toronto home to Buffalo, Tuesday, April 1

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Philadelphia Flyers vs. New York Islanders

- The Philadelphia Flyers and the New York Islanders will both be gunning for a victory on Saturday when they meet at Nassau Coliseum.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Jim Dowd, Mike Knuble, Vaclav Prospal, and Randy Jones potted goals for Philadelphia in its 5-4 shootout loss to the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

New Jersey cashed as -145 home favorites as the teams played over the 5-goal total listed by sportsbooks.

The Islanders lost 3-1 to the Penguins last time out, as +250 underdogs. The four goals fell UNDER the posted over/under (5.5).

Josef Vasicek scored for the Islanders, and Wade Dubielewicz made 26 saves in the loss.

Team records:
Philadelphia: 39-28-11
New York: 34-37-7

Philadelphia most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 6-3-1
Before playing Tampa Bay are 4-6
After playing New Jersey are 6-4
After a loss are 3-7

New York most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 2-8
Before playing New Jersey are 6-4
After playing Pittsburgh are 7-3
After a loss are 4-6

A few trends to consider:
Philadelphia is 6-1 SU in their last 7 games when playing NY Islanders
Philadelphia is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Philadelphia's last 8 games when playing NY Islanders
The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Philadelphia's last 10 games when playing on the road against NY Islanders
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of the NY Islanders last 5 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of the NY Islanders last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of the NY Islanders last 8 games when playing Philadelphia
The total has gone UNDER in 7 of the NY Islanders last 10 games when playing at home against Philadelphia

Next up:
Philadelphia at Pittsburgh, Wednesday, April 2
NY Islanders home to New Jersey, Tuesday, April 1

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Carolina Hurricanes vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

- The Carolina Hurricanes and the Tampa Bay Lightning will both be gunning for a victory on Saturday when they meet at St. Pete Times Forum.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Jeff Hamilton and Tuomo Ruutu netted two goals each as the Hurricanes defeated the Atlanta Thrashers 7-1 on Friday night.

Carolina won as -285 home favorites as the teams played over the 6-goal total posted by oddsmakers.

The Lightning were defeated 4-3 in overtime by the Capitals as a +125 underdog on Thursday. The seven goals made it OVER the posted over/under (5.5).

Jeff Halpern, Alexandre Picard and Michel Ouellet replied for the Lightning. Karri Ramo stopped 28 shots in the loss.

Team records:
Carolina: 42-30-6
Tampa Bay: 30-38-9

Carolina most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 4-5-1
Before playing Boston are 4-6
After playing Atlanta are 8-2
After a win are 7-3

Tampa Bay most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 2-8
Before playing St. Louis are 3-7
After playing Washington are 4-6
After a loss are 3-7

A few trends to consider:
Carolina is 9-2 SU in its last 11 games
Carolina is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Carolina's last 5 games when playing on the road against Tampa Bay
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Carolina's last 6 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Tampa Bay's last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Tampa Bay's last 5 games when playing at home against Carolina
Tampa Bay is 12-4 SU in its last 16 games when playing at home against Carolina
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Tampa Bay's last 11 games at home

Next up:
Carolina at Washington, Tuesday, April 1
Tampa Bay home to Atlanta, Monday, March 31

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Chicago Blackhawks vs. St. Louis Blues

- Divisional bragging rights will be on the line on Saturday when the Chicago Blackhawks and the St. Louis Blues meet at Scottrade Center.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Blackhawks were shut out 4-0 by the Blue Jackets last time out, as a -110 pik'em on the road. The four goals went UNDER the posted over/under (5.5).

Nikolai Khabibulin stopped 32-of-26 shots in a losing effort.

Brad Boyes had two goals and an assist, including the winner in overtime to lead the Blues over the Detroit Red Wings 4-3 on Friday night.

St. Louis won as +275 road underdogs as the teams played over the 5-goal total listed by oddsmakers.

Team records:
Chicago: 36-33-8
St. Louis: 31-34-12

Chicago most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 3-6-1
Before playing Edmonton are 5-5
After playing Columbus are 3-7
After a loss are 7-3

St. Louis most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 4-6
Before playing Tampa Bay are 3-3-1
After playing Detroit are 5-5
After a win are 4-6

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Chicago's last 6 games when playing on the road against St. Louis
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Chicago's last 5 games when playing St. Louis
The total has gone OVER in 8 of Chicago's last 11 games on the road
Chicago is 9-4 SU in its last 13 games when playing St. Louis
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of St. Louis's last 5 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of St. Louis's last 6 games when playing at home against Chicago
The total has gone OVER in 4 of St. Louis's last 5 games when playing Chicago
The total has gone OVER in 7 of St. Louis's last 10 games

Next up:
Chicago home to Columbus, Sunday, March 30
St. Louis home to Nashville, Tuesday, April 1

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Edmonton Oilers vs. Calgary Flames

- The Edmonton Oilers and the Calgary Flames will both be trying to pick up a win on Saturday when they battle at Pengrowth Saddledome.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Tom Gilbert led Edmonton with a goal and a helper in its 5-4 shootout loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Friday night.

Colorado won as -200 home favorites as the teams played over the 5.5-goal total set by oddsmakers.

Dion Phaneuf scored the game-winning goal to lead the Flames to a 3-2 win over the Canucks last time out, as -125 favorites. The five goals were a PUSH against the posted over/under (5).

Jarome Iginla and Daymond Langkow scored the other goals for the Flames. Miikka Kiprusoff made 32 saves in the win.

Current streak:
Edmonton has lost 2 straight games.

Team records:
Edmonton: 39-34-6
Calgary: 40-27-10

Edmonton most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 5-5
Before playing Detroit are 8-2
After playing Colorado are 8-2
After a loss are 6-4

Calgary most recently:
When playing on Saturday are 7-3
Before playing Los Angeles are 5-5
After playing Vancouver are 5-5
After a win are 5-5

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone OVER in 12 of Edmonton's last 16 games
The total has gone OVER in 13 of Edmonton's last 18 games on the road
Edmonton is 12-5 SU in its last 17 games
The total has gone UNDER in 17 of Edmonton's last 25 games when playing Calgary
Calgary is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games at home
Calgary is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games when playing at home against Edmonton
The total has gone UNDER in 11 of Calgary's last 16 games
The total has gone UNDER in 17 of Calgary's last 25 games when playing Edmonton

Next up:
Calgary at Vancouver, Sunday, March 30

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