The Buzzer: Bobrovsky does it again; Kuemper comes up huge

Three stars

1. Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets

Who are you going to call on when you need a win in for the Blue Jackets? Well, it has to be a man called Bob.

Bobrovsky made 26 saves in a 4-0 shutout — his eighth of the season and second in as many starts — as the Blue Jackets kept pace with the Montreal Canadiens, who also won on Tuesday. Bob has three shutouts in his past four starts as he tries to guide Columbus into the playoffs.

This is all set up for a Titanic matchup between the Canadiens and the Blue Jackets on Thursday. Columbus has a game in hand on the Canadiens and a win would see them leapfrog the Canadiens with five games remaining.

3. Tomas Tatar, Montreal Canadiens 

Speaking fo the Habs… Tatar set the pace in this one, scoring twice in the first period to help the Canadiens to a 3-0 lead.

Tatar would add an assist in a three-point night, which proved to be a huge win. The Habs moved to within one point of the Carolina Hurricanes, who own the first wildcard, and Montreal made sure the Blue Jackets didn’t gain any ground for the second spot.

Montreal has caught fire at precisely the right time with four wins and points in each of their past five games.

3. Darcy Kuemper, Arizona Coyotes

The Coyotes are level with the Colorado Avalanche for the second and final wildcard in the West thanks to Kuemper, who turned aside 31 shots for a massive shutout that makes Friday’s game against the Avalanche the biggest in Arizona for some time.

Colorado has a game in hand on the Coyotes, which they will use up on Wednesday against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Arizona had lost five straight prior to Tuesday as their surge hit quite the roadblock. Kuemper has been tremendous for Arizona in Antti Raanta‘s absence. It’s going to be quite the finish over the next week and a half.

Highlights of the night

Quite the pass here:

Draisaitl’s hatty:

These guys look like the Lightning out there:

Here’s Sam Steel’s hat trick goal — and the odd play that led to it:

Factoids

Scores

Capitals 4, Hurricanes 1
Blue Jackets 4, Islanders 0
Canadiens 6, Panthers 1
Senators 4, Sabres 0
Oilers 8, Kings 4
Ducks 5, Canucks 4
Coyotes 1, Blackhawks 0


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

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