Paul Battaglia, Associated Press
ST. PAUL, Minn. Marian Gaborik scored two goals, including the winner three minutes into overtime, and the Minnesota Wild celebrated clinching a playoff spot by beating the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 on Sunday.
Detroit beat Nashville minutes before Minnesota took the ice Sunday, which sent the Wild to its second straight playoff berth.
Jeff Finger and Ruslan Salei scored for Colorado, which rebounded from a slow start to earn a point. The Avalanche, playing without Peter Forsberg who was scratched with a groin injury, had their three-game winning streak snapped.
SABRES 2, BRUINS 1 (OT): At Buffalo, N.Y., Andrej Sekera scored 39 seconds into overtime to lead Buffalo over Boston and keep alive the Sabres' threadbare playoff hopes. Ryan Miller stopped 17 shots and Toni Lydman also scored for Buffalo, which would have been eliminated from contention with a loss. David Krejci scored for the Bruins, who still gained a point and, with 91, moved into a three-way tie for sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings.
PENGUINS 3, RANGERS 1: At Pittsburgh, Sidney Crosby set up goals by Marian Hossa and Evgeni Malkin and the Pittsburgh Penguins, playing at close to full strength for the first time in weeks, moved into first place in the Eastern Conference. Marc-Andre Fleury played another excellent game in net, turning aside 26 shots. The Rangers, missing an opportunity to move into fifth place in the conference, controlled much of the play for the final two periods but couldn't score in the final 56 minutes.
RED WINGS 1, PREDATORS 0 (OT): At Detroit, Johan Franzen scored with 1:39 left in overtime to give Detroit the win. Dominik Hasek, returning after missing two games because of the flu, stopped 22 shots for his 81st career shutout. Franzen's goal also ended the franchise-record 233-minute, 39-second shutout streak of Nashville's Dan Ellis, who finished with 35 saves.
BLACKHAWKS 5, BLUE JACKETS 4 (SO): At Chicago, Patrick Kane scored the only goal in a shootout, and Chicago remained in the hunt for a playoff berth with a 5-4 victory over Columbus. After Nikolai Khabibulin denied Joakim Lindstrom to open the shootout, Kane deked to his forehand and slipped a backhander past Fredrik Norrena. Khabibulin clinched the victory with a pad stop on Rick Nash on the final attempt. Jonathan Toews, Jason Williams and Patrick Sharp scored power-play goals for the Blackhawks, who pulled within three points of eighth-place Nashville in the Western Conference with three games remaining.
SHARKS 3, COYOTES 1: At San Jose, Calif., Joe Thornton scored two goals in the first period, and San Jose eliminated Phoenix from playoff contention. Curtis Brown also scored and Evgeni Nabokov made 19 saves for the Sharks, who have earned a point in every game since Feb. 20 while rolling to the third Pacific Division title in franchise history.
DUCKS 3, STARS 2 (SO): At Anaheim, Ducks defenseman Mathieu Schneider scored twice in regulation, goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere made a pair of stops in a shootout and Anaheim defeated Dallas. Teemu Selanne and Chris Kunitz had goals against Marty Turco in the shootout. Brad Richards had the only goal for the Stars in the three-round showdown, and Giguere blocked shots by Mike Modano and Jere Lehtinen.
CANUCKS 6, FLAMES 2: At Vancouver, Trevor Linden broke open a tie game with two goals 5 minutes apart in the second period to lead Vancouver over the Calgary. Matt Pettinger added a second-period goal, and Brad Isbister scored 52 seconds into the third as Vancouver snapped a four-game losing streak and regained control of its playoff destiny. Sami Salo and Markus Naslund also scored, and Roberto Luongo made 27 saves for the Canucks, who moved one point ahead of ninth-place Nashville, just two points behind the seventh-place Flames. All three teams have three games left in the season.
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