Stars make Lightning wait on playoff clincher with 1-0 win

Apr 12, 2022, 9:30 AM | Updated: 10:37 pm
Dallas Stars goaltender Scott Wedgewood (41) defends the goal against Tampa Bay Lightning center An...

Dallas Stars goaltender Scott Wedgewood (41) defends the goal against Tampa Bay Lightning center Anthony Cirelli (71) during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

(AP Photo/LM Otero)

              Dallas Stars center Roope Hintz (24) celebrates his goal with left wing Jason Robertson (21) during the third period of the team's NHL hockey game against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. The Stars won 1-0. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
            
              Dallas Stars left wing Jamie Benn (14) fights with Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Nicholas Paul (20) during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
            
              Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Alex Killorn (17) takes control of the puck next to Dallas Stars left wing Jason Robertson (21) during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
            
              Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy (88) defends against Dallas Stars center Luke Glendening (11) during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
            
              Dallas Stars goaltender Scott Wedgewood (41) defends the goal against Tampa Bay Lightning center Anthony Cirelli (71) during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Dallas, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

DALLAS (AP) — Roope Hintz and the Dallas Stars are in a fight for a playoff spot in the Western Conference, while it’s just a matter of time for two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay in the East.

The Stars will take the two points from a tight battle between teams with some recent postseason history.

Hintz scored with 4:50 remaining and the Stars forced the Lightning to wait at least another day to clinch a playoff berth with a 1-0 victory Tuesday night.

“That was huge for our group,” said Luke Glendening, who almost had an empty-netter late after creating several short-handed chances for himself in the second period. “I thought to a man everyone really competed tonight. It’s fun to see when everybody’s pulling on the same rope.”

Dallas moved three points ahead of Vegas for the second of two wild cards in the Western Conference. The Stars have nine games remaining, one more than the Golden Knights, who lost to Vancouver 5-4 in overtime.

Tampa Bay could have secured a fifth consecutive playoff appearance and eighth in the past nine years with a victory. The first of those two Stanley Cup titles came against the Stars in the 2020 playoff bubble in Canada.

Dallas topped Tampa Bay at home for just the second time in eight games, and beat goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy for only the second time in 17 games. The Lightning have allowed two goals in regulation in the past three games, but are 1-1-1.

“It’s unfortunate that we only have three points to show for it. That’s tough,” coach Jon Cooper said. “Sometimes that can be frustrating. But if we’re going to give up zero and one goal a game, I’ll take our chances.”

Good scoring chances on both ends had come up empty before a shot by Jason Robertson created a scramble that ended with Joe Pavelski passing from behind the end line to Hintz in the slot.

Scott Wedgewood stopped 25 shots for his first shutout since joining the Stars in a trade with Arizona. It was the fifth of his career.

Vasilevskiy made 28 saves.

After Glendening couldn’t quite win the race to a puck with an empty net in front of him, the Stars held off a mad scramble at 6-on-5 in the final minute.

Tyler Seguin, stung by a blocked shot earlier, was dinged again in the final 10 seconds when he stymied a shot from Victor Hedman.

“It’s a lot of desperation. They were great in front of me all night,” said Wedgewood, whose only loss in four starts for Dallas was in overtime. “Probably the best-structured game I’ve been a part of on both sides of the puck.”

With the game scoreless in the third, Glendening had a breakaway off a steal, but Vasilevskiy made a glove save. Just 36 seconds later, Ondrej Palat had a point-blank chance at the other end, and Wedgewood made a pad save.

Dallas defenseman Esa Lindell was penalized twice in the second period, but the Stars ended up with better scoring chances than the Lightning on both penalty kills.

After Lindell was called for cross-checking midway through the second, Dallas spent most of the second minute in its offensive end, and Vasilevskiy had to make two saves on shots by Glendening.

Hintz and Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov collided near center ice in the second period, leaving both players stunned as they picked up sticks that had been jarred loose. Kucherov went straight to his bench. Both stayed in the game.

Glendening had another chance in the final seconds of Lindell’s high-sticking penalty late in the second, but a backhand went just wide.

NOTES: Jamie Benn of Dallas and Tampa Bay’s Nicholas Paul had a lengthy fight without any significant punches thrown, or landed, midway through the first period. It finally ended when Paul lost his footing as Benn threw a couple of punches that went over the top of him. … The Stars’ Vladislav Namestnikov didn’t return after the first period because of a lower-body injury.

UP NEXT

Lightning: A five-game homestand, the longest of the season, starts Thursday against Anaheim. Tampa Bay is in a stretch of 11 of 13 games at home.

Stars: Minnesota visits Thursday. The winning team has scored at least six goals in each of the three meetings this season. Dallas has 7-4 and 6-3 victories. The Wild took the first matchup 7-2.

___

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - Austria's Katharina Liensberger speeds down the course during the first run of an alpine ski...
Associated Press

Austrian ski team aims to rediscover its magic at worlds

VIENNA (AP) — Only one skier in the 24-member Austrian squad for the upcoming world championships has won on the Word Cup circuit this season. A star coach left the women’s team mid-January. And “crisis” has become a common word on the ski-mad nation’s sport pages. Has the once dominating “Wunderteam” from Austria lost its […]
1 day ago
FILE - Workers prepare to remove giant Olympic rings from the waterfront area at Odaiba Marine Park...
Associated Press

Tokyo Olympic bribery scandal rolls on; company apologizes

TOKYO (AP) — A Japanese company embroiled in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic corruption scandal said Thursday it would strengthen oversight to prevent further wrongdoing. Kadokawa “seriously betrayed public trust,” company president Takeshi Natsuno said. He bowed deeply with two other executives to show remorse in a news conference. Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, the son of the founder, […]
1 day ago
Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray (5) dunks over Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul during the first h...
Associated Press

Murray scores 21 points, Hawks roll past Suns 132-100

PHOENIX (AP) — Trae Young rose up for a 3-pointer in the second half that left his hands way too hard, hurtling toward the basket before slamming off the backboard and through the hoop. Atlanta’s star guard shrugged and ran back down the court with a sheepish grin. Things were going the Hawks way Wednesday […]
1 day ago
Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam, left, guards Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson, right, during ...
Associated Press

Markkanen, Conley power Jazz to 131-128 win over Raptors

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Lauri Markkanen had 28 points and 13 rebounds and Mike Conley added a three-point play and two clutch free throws in the closing minutes to lift the Utah Jazz to a 131-128 win over the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night. “Taking my time, having a little more patience, not just […]
1 day ago
Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) looks to pass while defended by Minnesota Timberwolv...
Associated Press

Russell, Edwards help Timberwolves beat Warriors in OT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — D’Angelo Russell scored 14 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter, Anthony Edwards took over in overtime after Russell fouled out and the Minnesota Timberwolves outlasted the Golden State Warriors 119-114 on Wednesday night. Russell fouled out after two quick whistles in the first minute of overtime. That set the stage […]
1 day ago
Boston Bruins' Pavel Zacha (not shown) scores on Toronto Maple Leafs' goaltender Ilya Samsonov (35)...
Associated Press

Pavel Zacha scores twice as Bruins beat Maple Leafs 5-2

TORONTO (AP) — The Toronto Maple Leafs feel like they can keep up with the NHL-leading Boston Bruins. They just need to do it for three consecutive periods. Pavel Zacha scored twice in the third as Boston surged past the Maple Leafs 5-2 on Wednesday. After a scoreless first period, Toronto trailed 2-1 at the […]
1 day ago
Stars make Lightning wait on playoff clincher with 1-0 win