MONTREAL Andrei Kostitsyn scored two of Montreal's three first-period goals and the Canadiens clinched a playoff spot with a 7-5 win over the Ottawa Senators on Monday night.
Chris Higgins also scored in the first as Montreal beat Martin Gerber three times in the opening period while outshooting Ottawa 14-7.
The Canadiens added four goals in the second as Francis Bouillon, Andrei Markov, Mikhail Grabovski and Tom Kostopoulos scored on Ray Emery, who replaced Gerber to begin the middle period.
Carey Price stopped 31 shots for Montreal, which returned to the playoffs for just the fourth time in the past nine seasons.
Dany Heatley got his 38th and 39th goals for the Senators, who scored four times in the third period after falling behind 7-1 late in the second.
Antoine Vermette, Martin Lapointe and Jason Spezza also scored for Ottawa.
ISLANDERS 4, PENGUINS 1: At Uniondale, N.Y., Bill Guerin had a goal and assist in the decisive second period for New York, which prevented Pittsburgh from clinching a playoff spot with a victory.
Richard Park, Sean Bergenheim and Trent Hunter also scored for the Islanders, and Wade Dubielewicz stopped 28 shots. New York snapped a five-game losing streak at home.
OILERS 5, WILD 3: At Edmonton, Alberta, Andrew Cogliano scored two goals to lead Edmonton over Minnesota.
Curtis Glencross, Dustin Penner and Kyle Brodziak also scored for Edmonton. Nick Schultz, Sean Hill and Todd Fedoruk scored for Minnesota.
It was the sixth win in their past seven games and 12th in their past 15 for the Oilers, who passed idle Nashville into ninth place in the Western Conference. They remained three points back of Colorado.
AVALANCHE 2, FLAMES 0: At Denver, Colorado snapped a four-game losing streak with a crucial win over Calgary behind Jordan Leopold's first goal in 2 1/2 months and Jose Theodore's third shutout of the season.
The skid had sent the Avs from first place in the Northwest Division to clinging onto the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. With the win, they moved into a tie for seventh with Vancouver, four points ahead of Nashville in ninth place.