NHL Capsules

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) Brad Marchand scored his NHL-leading 36th goal, David Backes put Boston ahead after returning from an injury and the Bruins ended Calgary’s 10-game winning streak Wednesday night with a 5-2 victory over the Flames.

Marchand is also tied with Chicago’s Patrick Kane and Edmonton’s Connor McDavid for tops in the league with 76 points.

Backes got tied up with Flames defenseman Mark Giordano and was taken into the corner boards 12 minutes into the game. Backes was favoring his leg as he was helped off the ice.

But he returned seven minutes into the second period and on his second shift back he broke a 2-all tie. Backes took a pass from David Krejci on a 3-on-2 and from 30 feet whipped a wrist shot over the glove of Chad Johnson.

David Pastrnak scored twice, and Matt Beleskey also scored for Boston. The Bruins’ fourth straight win moved them within three points of second-place Ottawa in the Atlantic Division.

Alex Chiasson and Dougie Hamilton scored for the Flames.


PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Wayne Simmonds scored the 200th goal of his career and Steve Mason made 23 saves to lead Philadelphia over Pittsburgh.

Sean Couturier, Claude Giroux and Dale Weise also scored for the Flyers, who closed within five points of the idle New York Islanders for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Making the postseason remains a long shot for Philadelphia with just 13 games remaining and four teams to pass.

Philadelphia snapped a three-game losing streak while handing the defending Stanley Cup champions their fourth shutout of the season.

The road-weary Penguins completed an eight-day, five-game road trip that took them through four time zones as they traveled 4,763 miles. The journey got longer due to Tuesday’s snowstorm in the Northeast, which caused the Penguins to fly home from Calgary late Monday night rather than directly to Philadelphia. Pittsburgh arrived in Philadelphia late Wednesday morning.

With 95 points, Pittsburgh remained two behind idle Washington for first place in the Metropolitan Division and the best record in the NHL.

Mason posted his third shutout of the season and the 33rd of his career.


ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) – Rickard Rakell scored his 30th of the season, Ryan Getzlaf added a short-handed goal and Anaheim defeated St. Louis.

Jonathan Bernier made 26 saves for his fourth straight win as Anaheim passed Calgary for second place in the Pacific Division.

Ivan Barbashev scored his third career goal and Jake Allen made 20 saves, but the Blues’ five-game winning streak was stopped.

St. Louis missed out on its chance to pass Nashville for third place in the Central Division. The Blues still hold the second wild card in the Western Conference, four points ahead of Los Angeles.

Rakell hit the 30-goal mark for the first time in his five-year career by putting the Ducks ahead 5:32 into the first period.


DENVER (AP) – J.T. Compher scored his first NHL goal and Calvin Pickard stopped 27 shots in Colorado’s win over Detroit.

Matt Duchene scored his first goal in 12 games and Carl Soderberg added his first in 18 games as the NHL-worst Avalanche won at home for the third time in four tries. They are 11-22-2 at the Pepsi Center this season.

Andreas Athanasiou scored for the Red Wings, who, like their once-hated rival, are well out of the playoff hunt. Jimmy Howard made 26 saves in his second start since returning from a knee injury that had kept him out since Dec. 20.