Kevin Hayes scored his first hat trick of his career in Philadelphia on Tuesday as the Flyers continued their rise in the standings with a 5-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks.
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Hayes scored his 11th, 12th and 13th of the season, the last in an empty net. It is the eighth win in the last ten games for John Tortorella’s club, this time against the worst team in the National Hockey League (NHL). The final rank that will grant access to the playoffs is just five points away.
Rasmus Ristolainen finally ended his losing streak, with the defender claiming his first win of the season. It was a ninth deficit for the Flyers, more than for any team to date.
Rookie Samuel Ersson earned his fifth straight win in front of the net for Team Pennsylvania on a performance of 25 saves. Only Adam Henrique and Frank Vatrano beat him. He has a perfect 5-0-0 career record so far, having seen action in seven games since the start of the campaign.
Bombed with 38 shots, Antony Stolarz did what he could by yielding four times. The substitute can almost say he’s enjoyed a brief evening at work, having been tested at least 40 times in his three previous starts since early December.
The Maple Leafs help the CH
The Maple Leafs gave the Montreal Canadiens a good hand, coming back to win 5-4 in overtime against the Florida Panthers in Toronto.
William Nylander played the heroes by equalizing in the third period and scoring the winner in overtime.
Dryden Hunt, Alexander Kerfoot and Auston Matthews also scored for the Leafs while Carter Verhaeghe, Anton Lundell, Josh Mahura and Alexander Barkov responded.
The Habs currently hold the Panthers’ first pick in the upcoming draft. The Florida team finished 10th in the East after Tuesday’s game.
Gustavsson stands up
Filip Gustavsson dominated against the Washington Capitals to give the Minnesota Wild a third straight win, this time 4-2 in Saint Paul.
The 24-year-old Swede made 34 saves and was beaten only by Martin Fehervary and Dylan Strome. However, those two goals allowed the local favorites to take the lead, but Jared Spurgeon and Jonas Brodin responded each time.
Spurgeon also added a second goal late in the second period, then Joel Eriksson Ek added the finishing touches in an empty net.
Meanwhile, Charlie Lindgren conceded three goals from 21 shots.