Hurricanes Out Of Room For Error In Playoff Race


Monday, March 12th 2007, 5:53 am
By: News On 6


The Carolina Hurricanes let a point get away to their closest rival in the Eastern Conference playoff chase, giving the defending champions little room for slip-ups down the stretch.

Jaromir Jagr scored in the shootout to lift the Rangers to a 2-1 victory over the Hurricanes on Sunday, and push New York into a tie with Carolina for the final playoff spot in the East.

New York has won four of five and earned a point in seven straight games (5-0-2). The Rangers have 13 games remaining _ one more than Carolina _ and own a tiebreaker over the Hurricanes after going 3-1 in the season series.

``Obviously you come here to get two points,'' said Hurricanes starting goalie Cam Ward, who left in the second period after being cut on the leg. ``But any point at this stage of the season is huge. You deal with it and move forward.''

In other NHL games, it was, Boston 6, Detroit 3; Minnesota 3, Colorado 2 in overtime; Dallas 4, Los Angeles 3 in overtime; San Jose 3, Edmonton 0; and Anaheim 4, Vancouver 2.

In Anaheim, Teemu Selanne scored two goals to become the first player to have two 40-goal seasons after turning 35. The 36-year-old All-Star Selanne has 41 goals this season after scoring 40 last season.

``It was a great effort again, everyone did their jobs,'' Selanne said. ``They're probably the hottest team in the NHL right now. It was almost like a playoff game, the intensity was there.''

In New York, Matt Cullen also scored in the shootout against Hurricanes backup John Grahame, and Henrik Lundqvist turned aside Justin Williams and Ray Whitney in the tiebreaker. Williams got the Hurricanes even at 1 with a second-period goal.

Jagr has shootout goals in two of his last three tries after an 0-for-4 start this season. Lundqvist made 30 saves.

Jagr, playing with a sore hamstring, also assisted on Marek Malik's first goal in 75 games. Malik got to the rebound, kicked the puck to his stick, and backhanded a shot inside the right post to make it 1-0 at 9:13 of the first period.

Jagr has 11 assists in 16 games.

Bruins 6, Red Wings 3

Marco Sturm had two goals and an assist to lift visiting Boston, which snapped a three-game losing streak.

Chuck Kobasew added a goal and an assist for the Bruins, and Petr Tenkrat, Patrice Bergeron, and Phil Kessel also scored. Tim Thomas made 35 saves.

Jiri Hudler had a goal and an assist for Detroit and Nicklas Lidstrom, and Robert Lang also scored for Detroit. Dominik Hasek stopped 19 shots.

Wild 3, Avalanche 2, OT

At St. Paul, Minn., Brent Burns' rebound goal with 18.9 seconds left in overtime lifted Minnesota.

Mikko Koivu scored two goals and Niklas Backstrom made 21 saves for the Wild.

Avalanche rookie Paul Stastny assisted on a first-period goal, giving him a point in his 18th consecutive game and setting the NHL record for the longest point streak by a rookie. Milan Hejduk and Ian Laperriere also scored for Colorado.

Stars 4, Kings 3, OT

Mike Modano scored his 499th career goal 35 seconds into overtime for host Dallas.

Modano scored his 14th of the season and third in five games on a quick shot from the high slot, beating Sean Burke to move three goals behind Joe Mullen for the career lead among U.S.-born players.

Niklas Hagman and Trevor Daley added goals, and Marty Turco stopped 18 shots for the Stars.

Dustin Brown scored two goals, Brian Willsie added a goal, and Burke made 30 saves for the Kings.

Sharks 3, Oilers 0

Evgeni Nabokov made 22 saves in his third shutout in four games, and San Jose won at home for the first time in five weeks.

Steve Bernier scored an early goal, and Kyle McLaren added another with 3:52 left in the Sharks' first home victory in five games. Matt Carle added an empty-netter for San Jose.

Dwayne Roloson made 28 saves for the Oilers, but couldn't prevent the defending Western Conference champions' seventh straight loss.

Ducks 4, Canucks 2

Selanne scored two goals and had an assist to lead host Anaheim in a hard-hitting matchup of division leaders.

Andy McDonald also had two goals and an assist for the Ducks, who have won five straight and seven of eight. Defenseman Francois Beauchemin had three assists and goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 22 saves.

The loss prevented Vancouver's Roberto Luongo from becoming just the 20th goaltender in NHL history to record 40 wins in a season.