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Blue Jackets win battle of also-rans

Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno is the center of attention after giving his team a 2-1 lead in a 4-1 win over the Sabres.

Associated Press

Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno is the center of attention after giving his team a 2-1 lead in a 4-1 win over the Sabres.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Nick Foligno and Dalton Prout scored 2:09 apart in the second period in the Blue Jackets' 4-1 victory over the Sabres on Friday night.

Brandon Saad, with his 30th of the season, and Matt Calvert also scored for Columbus in a matchup of teams eliminated from playoff contention. The Blue Jackets moved into 27th in the standings, a point ahead of Vancouver, and won two in a row for the first time since Feb. 23-27.

Rookie Sam Reinhart scored for the Sabres. They had a three-game winning streak snapped and lost in their home finale.

The loss means the Sabres, with 79 points, can finish no higher than 22nd. It still marks a significant improvement for a rebuilding team that finished last in the standings in each of the past two seasons.

Around the league: Wild left wing Thomas Vanek will miss the start of the team's first-round playoff series with an upper-body injury he recently aggravated. The Wild has the second wild card spot in the Western Conference and will play either the Stars or Blues. … The Islanders will be without center Anders Lee for the playoffs after his left leg was broken when he was hit by a slap shot from teammate Johnny Boychuk against the Rangers on Thursday. The Islanders will play either the Penguins or Panthers in the first round.

DEMERS STABLE: former Lightning coach Jacques Demers was in stable condition in a Montreal hospital, two days after having a stroke. Demers, 71 and now a Canadian senator, had improved to the point that doctors were planning to move him out of intensive care and into the inpatient stroke unit, said Sandra Sciangula of the McGill University Health Centre.

Blue Jackets 1 2 1 4
at Sabres 0 1 0 1

First Period1, Columbus, Calvert 10 (Dubinsky, Murray), 18:45 (pp). PenaltiesMcCabe, Buf (hooking), 7:42; Deslauriers, Buf (boarding), 18:25.

Second Period2, Buffalo, Reinhart 23 (Eichel, Moulson), 13:37 (pp). 3, Columbus, N.Foligno 12 (Jenner, Anderson), 15:16. 4, Columbus, Prout 3 (Karlsson), 17:25. PenaltiesCalvert, Clm (hooking), 1:03; Prout, Clm (hooking), 4:23; Saad, Clm (tripping), 11:36; Campbell, Clm (tripping), 12:45.

Third Period5, Columbus, Saad 30 (Wennberg, Bjorkstrand), 5:11. PenaltiesNone. Shots on GoalColumbus 14-6-10—30. Buffalo 8-18-9—35. Power-play opportunitiesColumbus 1 of 2; Buffalo 1 of 4. GoaliesColumbus, Korpisalo 16-11-4 (35 shots-34 saves). Buffalo, Kasdorf 0-1-0 (30-26).

Playoff glance

The top three teams in each division get playoff berths. The two teams in each conference with the next-highest point totals get wild-card berths regardless of their division. Wild-card standings with points, games left (GL; fewer games played is the first tiebreaker) and regulation/overtime wins (ROW, the second tiebreaker)

East Pts GL ROW

x-Rangers 99 1 42

Bruins 93 1 38

Flyers 92 2 36

x—clinched playoff spot

Blue Jackets win battle of also-rans 04/08/16 [Last modified: Friday, April 8, 2016 10:17pm]
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