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BLUE JACKETS TAKE A HIT

Times wires

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ben Smith tapped in a rebound with 3.7 seconds left on a wild scrum to give the Blackhawks a 4-3 victory over the Blue Jackets, who lost a prime chance to give themselves some breathing room in a race for the Eastern Conference wild-card spots.

With time running out, Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith threw the puck on net. Columbus goalie Sergei Bobrovsky blocked it with his arm, but it popped out of his reach. While he and two teammates scrambled to get to the loose puck, Smith got a stick on it and pushed it into the net.

Jeremy Morin, Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa also had goals for Chicago, and Keith had three assists.

Derek MacKenzie, Ryan Johansen and Artem Anisimov scored for Columbus, which kept the second wild-card spot, one point ahead of the Maple Leafs, but fell three points behind the Red Wings, who beat the Sabres 3-2.

Bobrovsky had 34 saves.

Game highlights: In a game between teams on the fringe of the East wild-card race, Ryan Carter scored with 4:54 left to lift the host Devils to a 2-1 win over the Capitals. League goals leader Alex Ovechkin scored his 49th for the Capitals, who lost their fifth straight. The goal was Ovechkin's first even-strength point since Feb. 27. ... The Canadiens trailed the host Senators 3-0 after the game's first six minutes but ended up with a 7-4 win behind a hat trick and five points from Max Pacioretty. The hat trick was Pacioretty's third of the season, tying him for the league lead with the Sharks' Joe Pavelski and the Stars' Tyler Seguin.

Around the league: The Maple Leafs will be without No. 1 goalie Jonathan Bernier for their push for a wild-card playoff spot in the East. Bernier is out at least through the April 13 end of the regular season because of a left knee sprain suffered Thursday against the Bruins.

Blackhawks 1 2 1 4 at Blue Jackets 1 2 0 3

First-1, Clm, MacKenzie 9 (Umberger, Boll), 1:32. 2, Chi, Morin 2 (Rozsival, Sharp), 17:10. Penalties-Seabrook, Chi (tripping), 7:08; Tyutin, Clm (cross-checking), 11:12; Bollig, Chi (hooking), 14:20.

Second-3, Clm, Johansen 31 (Dubinsky, Atkinson), :36. 4, Chi, Sharp 32 (Keith), 4:14 (pp). 5, Chi, Hossa 28 (Versteeg, Keith), 10:42. 6, Clm, Anisimov 21 (Wisniewski, Johnson), 12:47 (pp). Penalties-Bickell, Chi, major (fighting), 3:25; Boll, Clm, minor-major (interference, fighting), 3:25; Leddy, Chi (slashing), 12:31.

Third-7, Chi, B.Smith 12 (Keith, Seabrook), 19:56. Penalties-None. SOG-Chi 8-18-12-38. Clm 13-8-6-27. PP opps-Chi 1 of 2; Clm 1 of 3. Goalies-Chi, Raanta 13-4-4 (27 shots-24 saves). Clm, Bobrovsky 28-20-5 (38-34).

at Devils 0 1 1 2 Capitals 1 0 0 1

First-1, Wash, Ovechkin 49 (Grabovski, Backstrom), 10:12. Penalties-Volchenkov, NJ (holding), 3:51; Larsson, NJ (tripping), 4:59; Ward, Was (holding), 6:34; Chimera, Was (hooking), 18:50.

Second-2, NJ, Ruutu 8 (Gelinas, T.Zajac), 12:21. Penalties-Ward, Was, double minor (high-stick), :43; Wilson, Was (rough), 18:24; Zidlicky, NJ (roughing), 18:24; NJ bench, served by Brunner (too many men), 19:49.

Third-3, NJ, Carter 6 (Zidlicky, Harrold), 15:06. Penalties-Penner, Was (interference), 4:35. Shots on Goal-Wash 8-7-10-25. NJ 7-14-10-31. PP opps-Wash 0 of 3; NJ 0 of 5. Goalies-Wash, Halak 28-13-7 (31 shots-29 saves). NJ, Schneider 15-14-11 (25-24).

Canadiens 3 2 2 7 at Senators 3 0 1 4

First-1, Ott, Smith 12 (Phillips), 2:28. 2, Ott, Hemsky 12 (Wiercioch), 4:35. 3, Ott, Smith 13 (Zibanejad, Neil), 5:50. 4, Mont, Markov 7 (Galchenyuk, Emelin), 7:22. 5, Mont, Weaver 1 (Plekanec, Pacioretty), 9:17. 6, Mont, Pacioretty 36 (Vanek, Weaver), 15:52. Penalties-Plekanec, Mon (hook), :10; Parros, Mon (interfere), 17:43.

Second-7, Mont, Eller 12 (Gionta), 4:09. 8, Mont, Pacioretty 37, 15:25. Penalties-MacArthur, Ott (high-stick), 2:02; Galchenyuk, Mon, served by Briere, double minor (rough), 4:32; E.Karlsson, Ott (rough), 4:32; Tinordi, Mon, served by Briere, minor-major (unsportsmanlike conduct, fight), 13:15; Gryba, Ott, major (fighting), 13:15; Gallagher, Mon (roughing), 15:58; Galchenyuk, Mon (roughing), 15:58; Neil, Ott, double minor-misconduct (roughing), 15:58; Smith, Ott (roughing), 15:58.

Third-9, Mont, Pacioretty 38 (Desharnais, Vanek), 1:09. 10, Mont, Desharnais 16 (Pacioretty, Vanek), 9:14. 11, Ott, Zibanejad 15 (Turris), 14:07. Penalties-Smith, Ott, served by Hoffman, minor-misconduct (slash), 10:01; Parros, Mon, misconduct, 18:22; Neil, Ott, misconduct, 18:22. SOG-Mont 11-5-7-23. Ott 13-15-15-43. PP opps-Mont 0 of 2; Ott 0 of 4. Goalies-Mont, Budaj 10-8-2 (43 shots-39 saves). Ott, Anderson 23-16-8 (23-16).

Flames 0 2 0 2 at Panthers 0 1 0 1

First-None. Penalties-Upshall, Fla (interference), 3:29; Russell, Cal (tripping), 17:01.

Second-1, Cal, Agostino 1 (McGrattan, Billins), 1:34. 2, Fla, Trocheck 4 (Hayes, Pirri), 2:21 (pp). 3, Cal, Cammalleri 26 (Hudler), 6:09. Penalties-Bouma, Cal (hold stick), 1:49; Robak, Fla (trip), 9:42; B.Butler, Fla (trip), 18:53.

Third-None. Penalties-Campbell, Fla (slashing), 2:20. Shots on Goal-Cal 6-6-5-17. Fla 11-17-7-35. PP opps-Cal 0 of 4; Fla 1 of 2. Goalies-Cal, MacDonald 5-4-1 (35 shots-34 saves). Fla, Luongo 23-22-7 (17-15).

at Red Wings 3 0 0 3 Sabres 0 1 1 2

First-1, Det, Helm 11 (Glendening, DeKeyser), 5:47. 2, Det, Jurco 7 (DeKeyser, Alfredsson), 14:12 (pp). 3, Det, Alfredsson 18 (Kindl, Abdelkader), 15:28. Penalties-Smith, Det (hook), 8:52; Scott, Buf (high-stick), 12:59.

Second-4, Buf, McBain 5 (Ruhwedel, Leino), 12:28 (pp). Penalties-Smith, Det (high-sticking), 12:17; Girgensons, Buf (holding), 13:28; Legwand, Det (interference), 18:54; Ennis, Buf (hooking), 19:44.

Third-5, Buf, Deslauriers 1 (Larsson), 6:40. Penalties-None. Shots on Goal-Buf 7-7-9-23. Det 12-9-10-31. PP opps-Buf 1 of 3; Det 1 of 3. Goalies-Buf, Hackett 1-3-1 (31 shots-28 saves). Det, Howard 20-18-11 (23-21).

Playoff chase

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

East Pts GL ROW

Red Wings 88532

Blue Jackets 85 534

Maple Leafs 84 4 29

Devils 82333

Capitals 81 5 25

West Pts GL ROW

Wild 90 5 32

Stars 85 6 34

Coyotes* 85 5 30

Canucks 79 5 29

* late game

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